John A. Berenato Sr., 75, passed away peacefully at home Tuesday, January 29, 2019. Born July 16, 1943, in Atlantic City, he was a lifelong Atlantic County resident. John’s passions were golf, cooking and, most of all, the love of his life, his wife Dale. He was an Atlantic City boy through and through, starting on the stage of the Steel Pier as one of Tony Grant’s Stars of Tomorrow.
As a senior at Atlantic City High School, the Philadelphia Eagles tried to draft the teen football star. But John chose family — and their restaurant Luigi’s — over gridiron fame. From there, his culinary career took root. After Luigi’s, he worked his way up to executive chef at the Playboy Casino into its transition to Atlantis and, finally, to Trump Taj Mahal. John was proud of his accomplishments on the golf course, including being two-time Men’s Champion at Linwood Country Club, where he also made a hole-in-one, and as a member of the Golfers Hall of Fame in North Carolina. John yearned for just one more round at Hamilton Trails.
He was predeceased by his daughter, Karen. He is survived by his children, Jackie, John Jr., Missy, Patrick Sr. and Frances. Mourning their Poppy, are grandchildren Kristina, Taileaha, Nicole, Brian, Christian, Brianna, Brandon and Patrick Jr., and great-grandchildren Bella, Michael and Theo. Also missing his dad is one big, fat, fluffy cat, Mr. Ming. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that donations be made in John’s name to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 or Shriners Hospitals for Children, 2900 Rocky Point Dr. Tampa, Florida 33607. Friends and family are invited to a celebration of John’s life on Tuesday, February 5th, 2019 at 10 a.m. at the George H. Wimberg Funeral Home, 1707 New Road, Linwood. Services to begin at 11 a.m. Condolences may be extended to the family at ghwimberg.com