Rudolph John Centofante, (“Rudy”) 83, of Hendersonville, NC, passed away peacefully on October 6, 2009 at Elizabeth House, after courageously battling cancer for the past year. He is survived by his wife, Winifred (“Mickey”) of Hendersonville; son, John of Zionsville, IN; daughter, Terese of Canyon Lake, CA; brother and sister-in-law Alfred and Josie Centofante of St. Charles, IL; grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by a son, Mark Centofante.
Rudy was born on August 24, 1926 in Chicago, IL to Angelo and Teresa Centofante. He attended Crane Tech High School for three years, transferring to Glenbard West High School when his family moved to Lombard, IL. He was a veteran of WWII, serving in the Pacific Theater from 1944-46. He attended the University of Illinois at Navy Pier and Galesburg from 1947-1951. In 1948, with his usual entrepreneurial spirit he co-founded Angelo Centofante & Sons with his father, serving as President from 1948-1968. Always active in the community, Rudy served on the Lombard Village Board from 1958-1972, as City Clerk and as a Village Trustee. He was a founding member of West Suburban Bank and served on the Board of Trustees from 1963-1975. In 1969, Rudy turned his love of flying into a new business venture, founding Planemaster Services, Inc. at Dupage Airport. He served as President from 1969-1977. In 1978, after selling the business, Rudy pursued a new dream and moved to California, where he dabbled in real estate, flew, and devoted time to another passion, camping and RVing throughout the U.S.
Rudy touched many lives with his amazing spirit, infectious sense of humor, and love of life. He always had a story to share and a bit of wisdom to pass on. He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
A Celebration of Rudy’s Life will be held Saturday, October 17, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. at Church of the Holy Family, 419 Turnpike Road, Mills River, NC. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the American Cancer Society, 120 Executive Park, Building 1, Asheville, NC 28801 or to Four Seasons Compassion for Life's Elizabeth House, 571 S. Allen Rd., Flat Rock, NC 28731. www.thosshepherd.com