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Robert Henry Dolfi

October 3, 1937 - January 25, 2011

Noted restaurateur, publisher and Mario Lanza aficionado, Robert “Bob” Dolfi passed away on January 25th, 2011 as a result of heart failure at Torrance Memorial Hospital, California. Bob was a close friend of the late tenor’s parents, and of Lanza’s sons Marc (died 1991) and Damon (died 2008). With Damon La…read more

Noted restaurateur, publisher and Mario Lanza aficionado, Robert “Bob” Dolfi passed away on January 25th, 2011 as a result of heart failure at Torrance Memorial Hospital, California. Bob was a close friend of the late tenor’s parents, and of Lanza’s sons Marc (died 1991) and Damon (died 2008). With Damon Lanza he founded The Lanza Legend, a newsletter and website devoted to keeping the name and voice of Mario Lanza alive. The website, lanzalegend.com, attracts readers and forum participants world-wide. Following the death of Damon Lanza, Bob continued the project in association with his wife Marlene and another Lanza authority, New Zealand broadcaster Lindsay Perigo. Bob was the principal author of Be My Love—A Celebration of Mario Lanza (1999; 2008) which included Damon Lanza; Perigo; singers Al Martino, Kathryn Grayson, Licia Albanese, Jose Carreras; and Lanza biographers. Born in Boston, Mass., his family relocated to LA where Bob served in the 101st Airborne. While working in his father’s art studio doing reproductions, the budding tenor performed at Pucci’s restaurant in 1963 where he met Lanza’s parents and children. Lifelong friends, Bob and Damon owned several restaurants while promoting Lanza. His culinary expertise was legendary, as were his hospitality, generosity, robust conversation and risqué humor. He left behind many good friends. We will surely miss him. His coined phrase: “Mario Lanza Brings Good People Together.” Bob is survived by his wife Marlene, sister Suzanne Ingram, many loving nieces, nephews, and sisters/brothers-in-law. Bob’s wish: “No flowers, play Mario Lanza’s I’ll Walk With God, and then have a stiff drink on me. No tears, just smiles.” Contributions to The Heart Foundation or American Diabetes Association kindly accepted. Funeral visitation: January 30th, 2-4 & 6-8, A.M. Gamby Funeral Home, 25001 Narbonne Ave., Lomita; Mass 10am, Monday January 31st, St. Margaret Mary Church, 25511 Eshelman Ave., Lomita.

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