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Obituaries » John Raymond "Sheriff" Tiano
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January 12, 1925 - October 6, 2021
Burial Date October 11, 2021
Family and friends may call at the Amos Carvelli Funeral Home, 201 Edison Street, Nutter Fort on Sunday from 2:00 to 8:00 pm, where a Prayer Service will be held at 7:30 pm to conclude the visitation. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, October 11, 2021, at 11:00 am at the St. James Catholic Church with Father Akila Rodrigo as Celebrant. Interment will be in the Holy Cross Cemetery where full Military Graveside Rites will be accorded. Masks are optional but preferred for visitation, however they are required at the church and dinner.
John Raymond “Sheriff” Tiano, 96, of Clarksburg, passed away Wednesday, October 6, 2021, at his home surrounded by his loving family and friends.
He was born January 12, 1925, in Clarksburg, the son of the late Joseph A. Tiano and Angelina Rose Guzzo Tiano. Sheriff is survived by several nieces, great nieces, great-great nieces, nephews, great nephews, great-great nephews, cousins, and many loving friends. He made his home with his two special nieces, Angela (Larry) Policano and Dr. Diane Paletta McClung (Reggie), and their children, Dr. Brian Policano (Whitney), Matthew Policano (Heather) and Dr. Kristen Payne (Bryan).
He is also survived by sisters-in-law Barbara Tiano, Clarksburg, Frances Tiano, Bridgeport, Kathleen Tiano, Michigan, and brother-in-law, Frank Merandi.
He was preceded in death by two sisters, Mary Paletta and Rose Marie Merandi, Clarksburg; four brothers, Felix Tiano, Tennessee; Albert Tiano, Michigan, William E. Tiano, Sr., Clarksburg, Joseph Tiano, Bridgeport, and one brother-in-law, Frank Paletta, Clarksburg.
Sheriff was a 1944 graduate of St. Mary’s High School and served in the United States Army upon graduation. He was employed by Rolland Glass and retired from the West Virginia Department of Labor as an inspector.
Sheriff was known for his best work as a referee. He refereed basketball for 28 years, working with the Southern Conference, Mid-American Conference, West Virginia Conference, WVIC Tournament, and high school tournaments. When he refereed a game, watching him was often more entertaining than the game. Dressed in jet black pants and the black and white striped official’s shirt, Sheriff was a whirlwind on the court. He would run as fast as the fastest player and was always on top of the play. He had fun but the game of basketball was serious business for Sheriff. Whether doing an obscure high school game or a big-time college game in the Southern Conference Tournament, Sheriff never gave less than his best. His whistle would pierce the loudest gymnasium and he garnered respect from coaches and players alike. He loved his hometown high schools, and his home state Mountaineers, always being an avid WVU fan. The story that made the rounds for years was that Sheriff was refereeing a WVU game in Morgantown and the ball went out of bounds. The opposing coach asked Sheriff whose ball it was and without missing a beat, he said, “Our ball!”
When he retired from refereeing, he never lost his love for the game. Sheriff stayed active, squeezing every minute out of every day. It was not uncommon to see him on the golf course or attending the West Virginia Italian Heritage Festival wearing a colorful hat celebrating his Italian heritage. Sheriff seemed to be at every event and standing next to him insured that you would meet every prominent person in the crowd. Everybody knew Sheriff and most people had a story to tell. You would often hear many people say, “Do you happen to know a little guy named Sheriff?” You never met a person who had a bad word to say about Sheriff. He always had a kind word for everyone he met and always had a smile on his face. He talked as fast as anyone you would ever meet, but his friends will point out that “Sheriff doesn’t talk too fast, people just listen too slow!”
Sheriff was a Catholic by faith and attended St. James Catholic Church, where he was active in many fundraising projects. He was a member of the Columbian Club, American Legion, Elks Club and Sons of Italy. He served on the Board of Directors of the Mollohan Foundation. He received many outstanding and distinguished awards from West Virginia Governors. One of his proudest moments was being named Italian Man of Year by the West Virginia Italian Heritage Festival.
Sheriff was a loving and generous man who did so much for everyone in his own special way. He made a difference in the lives of so many.
In the eyes of his family, many friends, and anyone who really knew him, Sheriff was truly a legend and will never be forgotten.
The family would like to thank all the loving caregivers who took wonderful care of Sheriff and who he thought of as family, especially special caregiver, Michelle Carpenter. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to: JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) 501 Martindale Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15212; or North Central WV Parkinson’s Support Group, Ms. Tracey Robertson, Treasurer, 107 C-Anna Square, Fairmont, WV 26554; or Harrison County Humane Society, 2450 Saltwell Road, Shinnston, WV 26431.
Masks are optional but preferred for visitation, however they are required at the church and dinner.
Family and friends may call at the Amos Carvelli Funeral Home, 201 Edison Street, Nutter Fort on Sunday from 2:00 to 8:00 pm, where a Prayer Service will be held at 7:30 pm to conclude the visitation.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, October 11, 2021, at 11:00 am at the St. James Catholic Church with Father Akila Rodrigo as Celebrant.
Interment will be in the Holy Cross Cemetery where full Military Graveside Rites will be accorded.
Expressions of sympathy may be extended to the family at www.amoscarvlli.com. A service of Amos Carvelli Funeral Home.