Alexander Edward Fava

December 1, 1937 - August 12, 2021
Alexander Edward Fava


On Thursday afternoon, August 12, 2021, loving husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather, Alexander “Alex” Edward Fava died at the age of 83.

Alex was born December 1, 1937 in Philadelphia to Guido and Martha (Trasel) Fava. During his early childhood, he was raised in Italy, where he survived World War 2 and witnessed the liberation of Rome. Following the war, his family returned to Philadelphia where he graduated from the Haverford School in 1955 and from Trinity College in Hartford, CT in 1959. That same year, he married the love of his life, Martha “Patsy” Smith.

Alex was commissioned in the United States Marine Corps as an artillery officer and assigned to Battery I of the 3rd Battalion, 10th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, FMF. He was honorably discharged as a 1st Lt in 1963, after three years of proud service to his country. Alex’s experience as a Marine, the dedication, discipline and teamwork, played a huge role in his life.

After moving his little family to Maine in 1965, first South Freeport then Yarmouth, Alex began a long career with Shaw’s Supermarkets Inc. He was with the company for 32 years and, as Director of Store Engineering, he helped the company grow from six stores to more than 300 before retiring in 1997.

Maine and everything it offered became a passion for Alex. He loved Casco Bay and captained several boats on which he taught his children and grandchildren everything from setting a hook in a striped bass to setting an anchor in the rocky depths. He loved the land as well and valued every plant, bird and animal. He gardened, (his zucchinis were the talk of the neighborhood!), carved beautiful wood decoys, loved photography and built his own dark room where he developed his black and white images.

Alex was passionate about life, its joys and wonders. He was proud of his Italian heritage and spoke often of his sister, Rita Fava Fegiz, and family who still live there, the culture and, of course, the food and wine. Alex loved to cook and was happiest when preparing an Italian meal for friends and family. He loved history, music and art. He had a unique passion for gadgets and always had the latest marvelous tool. Above all, however, Alex’s greatest love was for his family and friends.

Alex and Patsy moved from Yarmouth, Maine in 2015 deciding to leave the cold winters for the warmth and southern charm of Wilmington, NC.

Alex will be remembered for his passion for learning and deep conversations about intellectual topics, his impish sense of humor, and his distinctively warm laugh. He will be deeply missed by his wife of 62 years, Patsy Fava; his daughter, Patty Storms and partner Morty Bachar; and his son,Ted Fava and wife Raquel, along with his six grandchildren to whom he was “Nonno” and his great-grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life gathering for friends and neighbors will be held Sunday, August 22, 2021, from 4-6pm at 5950 White Heron Rd, Wilmington, NC. In recognition of Alex’s honorable and faithful service to his country, the United States Marines Corps Honor Guard will render Military Honors. The family will honor Alex at a later time.

Please share memories and condolences with the family by clicking on the “Post a Condolence” tab below.

Wilmington Funeral & Cremation, 1535 S.41st Street Wilmington, NC 28403. 910.791.9099.


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  • August 20, 2021
    Hazel Soule says:
    To the Family of Alex Fava. So sorry for your loss , Wife Pat’s , Son Ted and Daughter Patty and their families.. He was so nice and will be missed. Love you all.

  • August 20, 2021
    Ann and Denny Hoag says:
    Alex was Denny’s college roommate at Trinity College and we have stayed in touch all these years. We have shared many special times over the years, especially when we would go to Maine for visits. Most recently, we were in Wilmington in November of 2019 and were so happy to be with Alex and Pats one more time.

  • August 20, 2021
    Lisa MacLaren says:
    Oh my goodness, no. I have just spent the last 45 minutes trying to find his phone number knowing he had moved to NC. I have wanted to have a long, overdue chat and have been thinking about him this last week. I am his second cousin and grew up with his family in Philadelphia. His mother and my mother were very close first cousins all their lives – I adored Cousin Patty and Guido. My daughter and I visited Alex and Patsy in Maine perhaps 5 years ago and had a very fun time reminiscing about Philadelphia life. I also visited Rita in Rome and have been eager to have news of her as well. My heart goes out to you all. He was a lovely, kind, delightful man and I will always miss him.

  • August 20, 2021
    Joan Britton says:
    I was truly sad to hear that Alex has died. My memories of him start back about 60 years ago to when he and Patsy were our neighbors in Freeport. He has always been good about staying in touch. I will very much miss his Christmas letters. I have so many memories… He and Patsy were so supportive during a difficult time in my life. Alex was an unusually gifted photographer. My first acquaintance with his work was when he did a black and white series featuring my CKC spaniels, but my favorite one of these was the one he took of them with one of our cats shoving to the front to take prime position (Alex had quite a sense of humor)! The last ones he showed me before he left Maine were some beautiful colored ones of flowers. Alex made so many lives richer.

  • August 20, 2021
    J. R. “Ted” and Judith Tate says:
    So sorry to hear of Alex’s passing. Alex and Patsy were our next door neighbors at the Marine Corps base at Quantico, VA, in 1961. My wife, Judith, and I shared many experiences with Alex and Patsy while we attended Basic School and Artillery School there, and subsequently when we were posted to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. As young lieutenants, we shared cookie jar change to get milk money for Patty and our son, Kelly, when money got tight before the next paycheck. Sadly, we went our separate ways when Alex finished his Marine Corps career, but we managed to stay in touch. We had the wonderful experience to visit them in Yarmouth in 1990 when we traveled through the area. His passing leaves a hole in our hearts, but the memories ease the sorrow.