Obituary of Joseph Merlan
Joseph A. Merlan, Sr., 68, of Rome, passed away on Saturday, September 29, 2018 at his home with his family at his side after a long, courageous battle with cancer. He was born in Canastota on August 17, 1950, the son of the late Aurelio and Evelyn (Youngs) Merlan. He was united in marriage to Deborah Towne in Rome on April 30, 1994.
Joe was a mason at the Baron Steuben Lodge #263 of Lee Center and he was a member of the Ziyara Shriners of Whitesboro.
Joe worked at Concorde-Titan Motor homes in Canastota before moving to Winston-Salem, NC in 1997, where he worked at the Arbor Acres United Methodist Retirement Community. He and Deborah returned to Rome in 2016.
During the '60s Joe was in a popular local band called the "Royals" that played all over central New York.
Surviving besides his loving wife, Deborah, are: his children, Jessica (Mark) Delia of Tempe, AZ, Joe (Lutitia) Merlan, Jr. of Syracuse; former wife, Diane Dunster; stepson, Steve Guerriero of Winston-Salem, NC; grandchildren, Jacob, LeeAnthony and Jason Merlan; sister, Janet (Joe) Ariglio of Oneida; in-law, Wayne and Marie Towne; band mates, George Franchell and Jerome Williams; close friends from North Carolina, Gary Bartholomew and Jim Bowers; Sandy Easton of Rome; special uncle, Dave Youngs; and his loyal dog, Desilu, and many aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.
Funeral services will be held on Thursday at Nunn and Harper Funeral Home, Inc., 418 N. George St, Rome, at 11:00 a.m. Interment will take place in Evergreen Cemetery. Family and friends are invited to call at the funeral home on Wednesday from 4-7:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Joe's memory may be made to the Ziyara Shriners Transportation Fund, PO Box 40, Whitesboro NY 13492.