Rocky Rosario (1941 – 2013)

rocky SQ

Bobby Glazer says this picture of Rocky Rosario was shot on the bench in front of Taco Juan’s in Woodstock. It has hung on the wall there for many years. Rocky loved the picture and visited it “often.”

Rocky Rosario, a colorful and widely beloved fixture of Woodstock street life for more than four decades, died on April 7 at Archcare of Ferncliff Nursing Home, in Rhinebeck, where he had resided since last November He was 71.

Maria Robertson, a nurse and longtime friend of Rosario, served as his devoted caregiver in recent years, providing amenities that he lacked, such as transportation and heated shelter in cold weather. In a recent interview Robertson reported that the cause of death was complications from retropharyngeal cancer. After undergoing two rounds of chemotherapy, Rosario declined further treatment, she said.

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According to Roberston, Rosario had been long estranged from four siblings. He left no known survivors. Lasher Funeral Home will perform a cremation. Robertson said that donations to Woodstock Fire Company No. 5, known as the rescue squad, or to Family of Woodstock, both of which generously assisted Rosario over the years, are welcome.

In an April 10 interview Sal Miccio, who is Robertson’s father as well as a close friend of Rosario’s since the 1970s, announced that a memorial service would take place from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, April 28, at the Harmony Café, at 52 Mill Hill Road in Woodstock. The event will feature music by two bands and other performers and an open microphone for remembrances of Rosario by his friends and acquaintances.

For further information about the memorial service or donations in Rosario’s memory, call Miccio at 679-7514.

Everyone in Woodstock seemed to know Rocky, a rail-thin chatterbox who would happily expound on just about anything at the drop of his ever-present Yankees cap. He moved to town in 1971 and never left. Woodstock supervisor Jeremy Wilber expressed his sadness at Rosario’s passing at the April 9 meeting of the town board. “I never knew anyone who had such courage to be himself,” said Wilber. “We will all miss Rocky.”

There are 7 comments

  1. George Greenidge

    I was so fortunate to have caught the picture of Rocky on FB. Who would have thought. I remember seeing him with a white apron on while he was working some where near the Joyous Lake on Tinker st. He always seemed to be busy racing around doing whatever ? Yes, yes, it was so good to see a Woodstock character who in the 70’s meant so much to so many. George Greenidge a Kingston face.

  2. Nathan Koenig

    RIP Rocky. peace & love from Vietnam. We know you were a Woodstock lover and player. When we get back to town, I’ll pull your uncensored movie from the Woodstock Museum archives and show it on public access. You will always have a warm place in our hearts, regardless of any hard shell appearance. Rock on bro!

  3. H.Kelley

    My Dear Friend Rocky, I really love you. I remember taking you home with me on a cold winter night
    An how you said you felt bad an didn’t want me to go out of my way for you, but I just wanted you to be safe.
    I love you Rocky an will always have great memories of you. Woodstock will never be the same with out you there. I know that you are in heaven with all your baseball heroes having some peaceful loving times.Thank you Rock, for being just

  4. Nicole Wills

    The last time I saw Rocky he was headed back to Maria’s …His spindly legs slightly bowed and that head of hair made him recognizable even from behind…Goodbye old friend…

  5. Alan Septoff

    When I lived in Woodstock in the eighties, Rocky seemed to be everywhere with his energetic boxers shuffle. He always had a nod and a smile.
    On my return visits I’d occasionally see Rocky in town…happy he was still around.
    RIP Rocky…shuffle with the angels.

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