The owner of Long Island City’s Waterfront Crabhouse, Anthony Mazzarella, a boxing enthusiast and an avid fundraiser for people with cancer, died on Jan. 24. He was 77.
Mazzarella opened the eatery, located at 2-03 Borden Ave., almost 40 years ago. It is known for its seafood dishes and walls decorated with boxing memorabilia.
The LIC restaurant, housed in a building dating back to the 1800s, has made it through two disasters, each causing it to be closed for months. The first was a fire in 2009 and just two years ago the eatery was flooded by several feet of water after Hurricane Sandy hit the city.
Mazzarella was also a member of the New York State Boxing Commission and the NY State Wine and Grape Foundation. He served as a member of the American Cancer Society and Queens Division, and he founded the Patty Fund for Childhood Cancer.
He started an annual block party on the Fourth of July that raised thousands of dollars for cancer patients. Other events were held at the Crab House, all for the benefit of the American Cancer Society. Every year he would also host a Christmas party for kids with cancer.
“He was a terrific man who really cared about his community and his neighborhood,” said Joseph Conley, former chairman of Community Board 2. “His contributions were special, as he was instrumental in [Patty Fund for Childhood Cancer], just to name a few. He will be greatly missed.”
Mazzarella was honored with the American Cancer Society’s St. George Medal, the highest and most prestigious award for outstanding service and leadership in the fight against cancer.
Also, as a former boxer, Mazzarella started the Golden Mittens to use physical fitness as a way to keep children away from drugs.
He is survived by his wife, Deanne, three children, two grandchildren and his siblings.
Services will be held on Jan. 29 from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 9 p.m. at the Pizzi Funeral House, located at 120 Paris Ave. in Northvale, N.J. A mass is scheduled for Jan. 30 at 11 a.m. at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church at 120 Kings Highway in Tappan, in Rockland County.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks donations be made to the United Hospice of Rockland at 11 Stokum Lane, New City, NY 10956.