For 94 years Guido Cianciotta lived on Withers Street. He loved his community, and he worked to make it a better place. It became a better place, and the community loved him right back. How does one say goodbye to such an individual? I can’t say this word. He is still present in all that he brought to his neighbors.
Guido was a hard-working member of the NYC Sanitation Department and an advocate for the neighborhood he loved. As one of the founders of Friends of Memorial Gore, he advocated for the maintenance of the memorial for WWI soldiers at Humboldt Street and Metropolitan Avenue named Memorial Gore. He and his wife planted flowers there through the years. He also was a founding member of the Concerned Citizens of Withers Street, which was a founding organization of Greenpoint Renaissance Enterprise Corp. (GREC). GREC went on to spearhead the development at the Greenpoint Hospital site to include senior housing, a senior center, affordable housing, and a homeless shelter. The idea for that development took nearly forty years of constant activism to bring it to today’s fruition where plans are being drawn and construction will soon begin. He was a regular at Brooklyn Community Board 1 meetings, ready to stand up and speak up for the community with his powerful voice, until his illness prevented him attending.
His passing was acknowledged by Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez on Twitter, “I would like to offer my condolences to the family of Guido Cianciotta, a beloved civic leader in Williamsburg/Greenpoint. He led the fight for senior housing and advocated for increase services for our seniors and youth. May he rest in peace.”
His wife, Theresa “Tish” Cianciotta, was by his side in marriage and community activism for almost 67 years. Their children are Gary Cianciotta and Dina Ditri. He was the father-in-Law of Debbie Pestka-Cianciotta and Anthony Ditri and was the grandfather of Theresa Ditri.