SPRINGFIELD, MA - It is with heavy hearts that the family shares the death of Michael A. Serafino, 66, on Thursday, October 28, at Baystate Medical Center.
Beloved is not a strong enough word to describe what Michael was to those who knew him - his wife, his children, his adoring grandson, his family, his friends, and his community. His absence is felt profoundly by so many for whom he was a dear friend, honorary father, mentor, and advisor.
Michael was born on October 20, 1955, the eldest of six children of the late Anthony Serafino and Constance (Turner) Serafino, and was raised in the Sixteen Acres section. He graduated from Cathedral High School in 1973 and Western New England University in 1977, where he met his wife of 42 years, and where he served as a longtime member of the board of trustees. He started out as a music reviewer for the Springfield Republican, then went on to have a successful 40-year career in wealth management. For the past 12 years, Michael was a senior vice president and portfolio manager at Raymond James Inc. He loved his work and said he could never see himself fully retiring.
In addition to serving on the board of trustees for WNE, Michael had just completed a 30-year tenure as a director and corporate officer of Behavioral Health Network. Over the years, he hosted many investment discussions for WNE students and others in an effort to broaden his understanding of investment markets. He previously served as an adjunct faculty member at Springfield Technical Community College, lecturing on investment topics.
Always curious about people and the world around him, Michael considered himself a lifelong learner. He was a talented and passionate musician, history buff, and voracious reader. Playing his guitars brought him enormous joy. He used to keep a harmonica in his car so he could play it impromptu at stoplights. He was known for his creative nicknames, his embarrassing but hilarious dad jokes, and his rhythmically-challenged hand dances. He loved spending time at his home in Vermont, sitting by the lake watching the boats with his wife and gardening together in their yard. In recent years he enjoyed going to Hampton Beach in New Hampshire, where he often took walks on the boardwalk and attended outdoor concerts with his wife. The three core tenets he has drilled into his children over the years encapsulate his thinking: “over prepare,” “being on time means being early,” and “measure twice, cut once.”
Michael’s dedication to family, friends, and the causes that meant most to him was unmatched. It is only in recent days that his family has learned of the extent to which he touched people’s lives and the myriad ways he was quietly helping so many.
Michael is survived by his devoted wife Patricia (Reale) Serafino; his three loving children who were his pride and joy, Melody Serafino and husband Jason Perlroth, of New York, NY, Noelle Serafino and husband Nicholas Clover-Brown, of South Deerfield, and Brandon Serafino of Hartford, CT; three brothers, Peter Serafino and wife Kathy of Ludlow, John Serafino and wife Debi of Rutland, VT, Phil Serafino and wife Linda Hervieux, of Paris, France; two sisters, Paula Serafino Cross and husband Michael Cross, of Wilbraham, and Mary Jane Plifka and husband Steve Plifka of East Longmeadow. He also leaves his very special four-year-old grandson Rowan Clover-Brown, who was the light of his life, as well as many extended family members and friends who will never forget him.
A public graveside service will be held on Monday, November 15, at 11 am at Springfield Street Cemetery in Feeding Hills. A celebration of life for Michael will be held in the spring of 2022. A notice will appear at that time with more information. In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Serafino Family Endowed Scholarship at Western New England University, Advancement Division, Western New England University, 1215 Wilbraham Road, Springfield, MA 01119; and Pease Greeters, PO Box 1644, Portsmouth, NH 03802-1644. Colonial Forastiere Funeral & Cremation, 986 Main Street, Agawam, is entrusted with arrangements.