Greensburg lawyer remembered for his dry wit and loving heart |

Greensburg lawyer remembered for his dry wit and loving heart

Deb Erdley

George Conti needed help.

It was 1973. His Greensburg law practice was growing, and then he learned his secretary needed a vacation. When he mentioned he was going to be shorthanded, a friend suggested he knew someone who might be willing to help for a week or two.

Kate Bauer, a young mother of two, agreed to fill in for Conti’s secretary.

When she finished her stint as a temp in his law office, Conti paid her as agreed.

She recalled how he smiled and politely said, “Your obligation to me has been fulfilled, and my obligation to you has been fulfilled. Now it’s Kate and George. How would you like to have dinner with me?”

The office temp quickly became a permanent fixture in the young lawyer’s heart. She recalled how he wooed her at the opera and at symphony concerts, fell in love with her daughters, then 9 and 11, and in 1974 married his one-time temp.

George A. Conti Jr., 80, of Unity died peacefully Thursday, May 9, 2019, following a brief illness.

“I always said if I ever married again, it would have to be one heck of a guy because he’d have to love two children. And he did,” Mrs. Conti said. “He just stepped in and they had a wonderful relationship. And then we had our son, John, and he was very proud to have a son.”

The growing family’s routine included vacations in Ocean City, N.J., every summer — despite Mr. Conti’s reservations.

“George didn’t like the beach that much. He’d say, ‘I hate sun, sand, sea and surf.’ But he loved the family, being at the beach with us and eating seafood,” Mrs. Conti said.

John Robert Conti of Andover, Mass., said he and his father shared a love of hockey. Although George Conti never played the sport, he ferried his son to countless games and practices when he played on multiple teams, including a traveling team that played at rinks far and near. George Conti was a devoted hockey dad who made lifelong friends with other hockey dads and volunteered for the Westmoreland Hockey Association, Latrobe Hockey Club and the Pittsburgh Amateur Penguins, his son said.

“He loved the Pittsburgh Penguins,” John Conti said. “One of his happier memories was that he and I got to be together in Detroit in 2009 when the Pens won Game 7 of the Stanley Cup.”

Mr. Conti was born Jan. 4, 1939, in Jeannette, the son of the late George A. Conti Sr. and Victoria J. (Biava) Conti.

He was a graduate of Jeannette High School, Saint Vincent College and Villanova School of Law.

He practiced law for 53 years in Jeannette and Greensburg.

Mr. Conti also served as a director of Commercial Bank and Trust of Pa. for 22 years, and as solicitor for Jeannette City Council.

John Conti described his father as a quiet but gregarious man who “knew everyone in town,” always had a smile on his face and was known for his dry wit.

He was an outdoorsman and a longtime member of Ducks Unlimited and the NRA, as well as a member of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy and the Pennsylvania Federation of Sportsmen’s Clubs.

Mr. Conti also was a longtime season ticket holder and board member of the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra.

He was a member of St. Vincent Basilica Parish.

Mr. Conti was preceded in death by his sister, Regina (Conti Evans) Olson, and infant grandson, Davis Lawrence McLean.

In addition to his wife and son and daughter-in-law, Kara Conti, Mr. Conti is survived by daughter Donna Jean Curtis, of Wayne, Pa.; daughter Jane Elizabeth McLean and husband, Larry, of Maitland, Fla.; and four grandchildren.

Friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. Monday, May 13, in the Hartman-Graziano Funeral Home, Inc., 1500 Ligonier St., Latrobe. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. Tuesday, May 14, at St. Vincent Basilica, 300 Fraser Purchase Road, Latrobe. Everyone please go directly to the Basilica. Interment will follow in Unity Cemetery.

Memorial donations may be directed to Saint Vincent College, 300 Fraser Purchase Road, Latrobe, PA 15650.

Deb Erdley is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Deb at 724-850-1209, [email protected] or via Twitter .

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.