During this difficult time when we can not come together and grieve in person and provide each other comfort, we wanted to take the space to remember and celebrate the lives of Union members who have passed during the last year.

To notify the Union about a coworker or family member’s passing, click here.

Antonio M. Garcia, Millennium Broadway

The Union is saddened to announce the passing of our brother “Tonio” Garcia, who worked as a bellman at the Millennium Broadway for over 20 years.

His younger brother Armando, a doorman at the Conrad Hotel, related a few poignant memories of his big brother. “There is so much to say about Antonio. By far he had the biggest smile, and without question he was the loudest joker in the room. Sometimes I felt like I was his big brother - it was our inside joke. My memories of him are like short films that I will watch over and over in my head, and they will forever occupy my dreams. I love and miss him so much, and I sincerely appreciate all his friends and coworkers who enjoyed his company and fun-filled conversations. He will be in our hearts forever and never forgotten.”

Read the full tribute here. 

Bernard Michel, Thompson Central Park

Our Union is saddened to announce the passing of Bernard Michel, a houseman at the Thompson Central Park for 39 years.

A devoted family man who loved celebrating the holidays with his family, Bernard is remembered for his generous spirit and kindness to those around him. He hosted family gatherings every summer and was always the life of the party. Bernard was an avid gardener and dedicated hours in the spring and summer to making his garden thrive.

Read the full tribute to Bernard here.

Bernardo Paredes, Rivers Casino & Resort

It is with great sadness that the family of Bernardo (“Benny” aka “Nardo”) Paredes announces his passing on May 31, 2020, at his home in Albany, NY at the age of 47 due to a sudden heart attack. “Benny”, as he was most affectionately known, was raised in a loving home, the son of Anita Paredes and father Pedro Antonio Collado Diaz, who preceded him in Heaven. Benny is survived by his dearest sibling, Jacqueline Paredes, and his cherished children, Bernardo Paredes, Jr., Kiara Paredes and Abrianna Sagodha Paredes whom he loved with all his heart.

Read the full tribute to Bernardo here.

Betty Brown, Courtyard LaGuardia

We are saddened by the passing of our Union sister, Betty Brown, a Room Attendant and Delegate at the Courtyard LaGuardia.

Business Agent Billy St. Pierre remembers Betty as an incredible delegate and a dear friend. “Betty was an extraordinary woman. She taught us how someone who was wise, strong, patient and selfless can impact so many peoples' lives. She truly led by example, and unified so many of her coworkers who trusted her leadership and wisdom. Her strength was interwoven with her sense of humor and compassion, and she mentored so many of her coworkers and delegates not because she had to, but because it was who she was. We will miss her greatly and I am forever grateful I had the opportunity to know such an amazing human being.” 

Read the full tribute to Betty here.

Bhisan Subhanaga, Friar’s Club

Our Union is sad to announce the passing of Bhisan “Singh” Subhanaga, who was a Waiter at the Friar’s Club for 33 years and our longest tenured member at the Club. His son Artitaya said he was considered “the friendliest guy at work”, and was beloved by his coworkers.

Artitaya also related how Bhisan loved to be at home and play the guitar – he was a big fan of Elvis and the Beatles. They also both enjoyed shopping on the weekends and going out for walks together.

Read the full tribute to Bhisan here.

Bienvenido Estévez, Yale Club

We are sad to announce the passing of Bienvenido Estevez, a steward at the Yale Club and a member for over 30 years.

Bienvenido’s wife, Milagros Estevez, remembers Bienvenido as a loving husband, father and a giving man. “He was an exemplary husband, and an exemplary father. He had an amazing mind and an amazing heart. Even when he wasn’t working, he was a generous man. If he only had ten dollars to his name, he would give nine of those dollars to someone who needed them. That was the kind of man he was.” 

Read the full tribute to Bienvenido here.

Carlos Lopez, Warwick Hotel and Local 6 Vice President

Carlos Lopez, a fixture at the offices of HTC and Local 6 for more than 30 years, passed away on April 24. He leaves behind his son, Carlos Lopez Jr., his daughter-in-law, Diana, and grandchildren Matteo and Natalia. Lopez was 84 at the time of his death.

The news was greeted with great sadness by veteran members of our Union, but many of them also had very fond recollections of Lopez.

Read the full tribute here.

Cristina Odalis Díaz, Evelyn Hotel

Our sister, Cristina Diaz, a room attendant at the Evelyn Hotel for 18 years, has passed away. Friends and family all remember her as always smiling and happy, never sad, and as a compassionate person who cared deeply about others.

Liliana Salazar, one of her close friends and a coworker at the Evelyn, said that Cristina’s efforts during the organizing drive in 2015 were a life-changing event for her. “Cristina was the one who convinced me to join the Union. I will never forget how hard she worked for us, and her beautiful smile always made us feel good.” Liliana also noted that Cristina was a devoted mother of three daughters and four grandchildren who loved life and loved to dance. 

Read the full tribute to Cristina here.

David Dioquino, Grand Hyatt

The Union is sad to announce the passing of our brother, David Dioquino, who worked as a steward at the Grand Hyatt for 36 years.

“He was just such a wonderful man,” recalled his son, Arsenio. “Even though he is no longer with us, it is so comforting to know how deeply he impacted the lives of everyone who knew him.” Arsenio also noted that his father believed in the Union. “The Union helped him at the Grand Hyatt several times, and he was proud of being a Union member.” 

Read the full tribute to David here.

Delali Bansa, St. Regis

The Union is saddened to announce that Delali Bansa, an overnight steward at the St. Regis Hotel since 1991, has passed away.

Delali was a pastor at the Living Gospel Ministry Church in the Highbridge section of the Bronx for over two decades. His coworker of nearly 30 years, Teddy Osei Bonsu, remembers Delali as a very kind man and devout Christian. “Delali was a strong, faithful man and a good friend. He gave many of us comfort and support on the job. Whenever one of our coworkers was going through something difficult, Delali would take us aside and pray for us.” 

Read the full tribute to Delali here.

Dominick Pugliese, Marriott Brooklyn Bridge

The Union is deeply saddened to announce the passing of our brother Dominick Pugliese, a housekeeping aide at the Marriott Brooklyn Bridge since 2001.

Known by all as an enthusiastic worker who cared deeply about the people around him, Dominick was adored by his co-workers, family and friends. He was also passionate about sports, especially the Yankees, Giants and Knicks. A devoted father to his three children, Dominick was immensely proud of his daughter Ashley in college.

Read the full tribute to Dominick here.

Edward Fazio, Pierre Hotel and Waldorf Astoria

Our brother, Edward Fazio, a food and beverage storeroom attendant at the Pierre Hotel for three years, passed away suddenly on April 21st, 2020. Edward had worked for over 20 years at the Waldorf Astoria as a breakfast banquet cook. He was 62.

Michael Greeley, who worked with “Eddie” at the Waldorf for many years, said that he was a “super nice guy and very reliable.” Michael remembers Eddie talking about all the different jobs he had before he became a cook and a proud Union member. 

Read the full tribute to Edward here.

Emas Owusu, Lotte New York Palace

It is with heavy hearts that we acknowledge the passing of Emas Owusu, a loving husband and father who worked as a steward at the Lotte New York Palace for over 20 years. Emas had a magnetic, kind and generous personality and left a lasting impression on all those he met. 

Kwasi Gyamfi, who worked with Emas for fifteen years in the kitchen at the Lotte New York Palace, remembers him as a generous, hard-working man. “He was a great man. We were like brothers. He was reliable at work, and if he saw someone in a difficult situation he would always help. He used to donate to orphanages and always contributed whenever anybody needed financial help.”

Read the full tribute to Emas here.

Ernie Peters, HTC Regional Director and Local 6 Vice President

The union was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Ernie Peters, a longtime HTC Regional Director and a Local 6 Business Agent and Vice President. Peters passed away on May 26. He was 85 years old and had been a member of our union for 68 years.

Throughout his long tenure at our union Peters was a strong representative of our members and a fierce enforcer of the contract. He was well respected by members and management alike. 

Read the full tribute to Ernie here.

Errol Whittaker Sr., New York Hilton

Our Union is saddened to announce the passing of our longtime brother Errol Whittaker. He worked as a painter for over 40 years, starting his career at the Milford Plaza (now Row NYC), before serving as President of Local 1422, and most recently working at the New York Hilton.

Errol was born in Kingston, Jamaica and came to Brooklyn, New York as a young man. Humble and quiet, Errol never liked to argue and refused to curse, instead using language like “son of a Brooklyn bridge” and “mother-flower.” He loved to cook his island cuisine. A dedicated member of Bedford Central Church, Errol did the audio ministry for over 20 years.

Read Errol's full tribute here.

Francisco Espinal, Radisson JFK

The Union is sad to announce that Francisco Adriano Espinal, an Engineer at the Radisson JFK, has passed away.

Francisco was a member of Local 94 and an Engineer at the Radisson JFK since 2001. He was working with the hopes of providing his three children with a better future.

Nahud “Coco” Rosado worked side by side with Francisco at the Radisson JFK for nearly 20 years. “Francisco used to tell everyone he was my ‘tio’ and he truly treated me like family,” recalls Coco. “When I got surgery a few years back, it was Francisco who took me back and forth to the hospital. He was always taking care of his family, friends, and coworkers first. I am really going to miss him.”

Read the full tribute to Francisco here.

Gabriel Diaz, Sheraton New York

Gabriel Diaz, a room service server and Delegate at the Sheraton New York, has sadly passed away.

Those who knew Gabriel remember him as a warm presence, hard worker, musician, and a loving husband and father.

Garde manger and Delegate Eladio Acevedo worked with Gabriel for almost 30 years and remembers him as a fierce Delegate for his coworkers. “Gabriel was a defender. I call him that because at work, Gabriel would always stand up to management and defend his coworkers. He became a Delegate because he was committed to being a voice for his fellow Union members. He helped people raise issues at work, and made sure people had the resources that they needed. He loved our Union and would often go to events and rallies to fight for us. They way I see it, he had two jobs: he would serve the guests as a room service server, and he would serve the members as a Delegate.”

Read the full tribute to Gabriel here.

Gary Crose, Renaissance Times Square

Our Union is saddened to announce the passing of Gary Crose, a potwasher at the Renaissance Times Square for twenty years.

Friends remember Gary as a gregarious and funny presence in the kitchen who always worked hard and loved his job.

Vladimir Timko, a dear friend and coworker at the Renaissance Times Square for twenty years recalls Gary’s generous spirit. “Gary was a kind and generous man who enjoyed volunteering at his church, and helping those less fortunate. He was always ready with a quick joke, and a guiding hand to help new employees. He was a proud Union member and supporter who strongly believed in equality, and opportunity. He was always grateful for his years of service to the Marriott Organization.” 

Read the full tribute to Gary here.

Georgia Mitilineos, St. Regis

Hotel Voice, Spring 2022

Our Union mourns the passing of Georgia Mitilineos, who was a Public Area Attendant at the St. Regis for 26 years.

Her husband George described her as “one of the best, we were very close, like one person.” Georgia and George were together 40 years and had one son and one daughter. George recalled how Georgia loved to travel, particularly to Greece to visit her family and favorite beaches.

Read the full tribute to Georgia here

Gerardo Vázquez, New York Hilton

Gerardo Vázquez, waiter, lobby porter and mail room attendant at the New York Hilton from 1963 to 1998, passed away on April 6th, 2020. Gerardo, or “Gery” as he was known to his friends and loved ones, will be missed by everyone whose lives he touched.

His wife of 37 years, and fellow Union member, Altagracia Vázquez, remembers Gerardo as a loving husband, “he was a great companion, a loving father, grandfather and husband.” 

Read the full tribute to Gerardo here.

Indraine Sanicharan, Resorts World Casino NYC

Our Union is sad to announce the passing of Indraine Sanicharan, who was a Public Area Cleaner at the Resorts World Casino NYC for ten years.

Indraine’s husband Bisambar expressed how much he misses her and shared that she was “kind and loving to everybody, and her family and everyone at the casino loves and misses her very much.” 

Read the full tribute to Indraine here.

Israel Gonzalez, Westin Times Square

Hotel Voice, Spring 2022

Our Union is sad to announce the passing of Israel Gonzalez, who was a Potwasher at the Westin Times Square for over ten years. He was an active Union member and loved by family, friends and coworkers.

Israel’s wife Kara Lynn, whom he shared 35 years with, described him as hardworking and a “tinkerer” who had many hobbies. Israel liked to build computers, sing out loud, and play the congas. Kara Lynn mentioned that they were both homebodies and loved to watch movies and play video games together.

Read the full tribute to Israel here.

Jacqueline Marranzini, Michelangelo & Sheraton New York Times Square

Hotel Voice, Spring 2022

Our Union is saddened to announce the passing of Jacqueline Marranzini, a Room Attendant at both the Michelangelo and Sheraton New York Times Square for over 20 years.

Jacqueline’s husband Manuel remarked that she was a happy and cheerful person that always carried a smile on her face. She loved to vacation in Florida and in the Dominican Republic, her native country. “She always liked to look put together and always made sure she had her hair done,” Manuel shared. 

Read Jacqueline's full tribute here

Linda Brown, Maxwell Hotel

Hotel Voice, Spring 2022

Our Union is saddened to announce the passing of Linda Brown, who was a Room Attendant at the Maxwell Hotel for 15 years. Linda is remembered for her cheerful disposition and warm, caring nature.

Linda’s daughter Melody shared that when her mother would visit her in their home country of Ghana they loved to shop and go to the mall together. While in Ghana, Linda also enjoyed running her own business selling drinks. Linda also liked spending time watching television and was a fan of the Filipino telenovela, The Brothers

Read the full tribute to Linda here

Marie Claire Joseph, Fitzpatrick Grand Central

It is with great sadness that our Union announces the passing of Marie Claire Joseph, who was a Room Attendant and a Delegate at the Fitzpatrick Grand Central for over a decade.

A family-oriented woman who enjoyed life to the fullest, Marie enjoyed singing and dancing to country music as well as traveling. She especially loved traveling to the islands, in particular to St. Lucia where her parents grew up.

Read the full tribute to Marie Claire here.

Marie Kelly, Carlyle

Hotel Voice, Spring 2022

Our Union is sad to announce the passing of Marie Kelly, who was a PBX Operator at the Carlyle for over 20 years.

At the age of 21, Marie came from Ireland to New York and later had three daughters with her husband Thomas Kelly. Marie’s daughter Catrina shared how her mom was “one of a kind, a true lady, friend and confidant with an infectious laugh and undeniable work ethic.”

Read the full tribute to Marie here.

Sonia Philpotts, Pennsylvania Hotel

Our Union mourns the passing of Sonia Philpotts, a room attendant for 21 years at the Pennsylvania hotel. Sonia is remembered for her contagious laugh, wonderful sense of humor, and strong will.

Tyrone Connell, Sonia’s HEAT representative, recalls her commitment to the Union, “Sonia was such a sweet and considerate woman. Whenever she and I spoke, she always made sure to share any news or updates with her co-workers.”

Read the full tribute to Sonia here

Vivian Yeboah, Ink 48

Our Union is sad to announce the passing of Vivian Yeboah, who worked as a Room Attendant at the Ink 48 for over a decade. Her fiancé Samuel shared how Vivian was “an incredibly generous person, she liked people and listened to everyone’s problems.” Samuel also described Vivian as a “God fearing person who did her best to go to church every Sunday.”

Samuel and Vivian enjoyed traveling together and had been planning to take a trip to Dubai soon. Vivian also loved traveling back to her home country Ghana to see her mother Elizabeth and her sister Gifty. They would spend their time catching up and taking trips sightseeing together. 

Read the full tribute to Vivian here

Walter Valderrama Sr., Grand Hyatt

The Union is sad to announce the passing of Walter Valderrama, Sr., our brother from the Grand Hyatt. Water worked at the Grand Hyatt for almost 22 years, first as a dishwasher and later as a houseman.

Carlos Obando, one of Walter’s colleagues at the Grand Hyatt for over 15 years, fondly remembers his friend as the perfect example of a nice guy. “Even though he was quiet by nature, he was really friendly. He was the type of guy who would help anyone without hesitation,” Carlos recalled. 

Read the full tribute to Walter here.

Yi Gao Huang, Doubletree Metropolitan

Our brother, Yi Gao Huang, an engineer at the Doubletree Metropolitan and Union member for the past 10 years, passed away on April 16th, 2020. Family, friends, and coworkers remember Yi Gao as a quiet and hardworking man who was devoted to his family.

Fellow Engineer Herman Sawney remembers Yi Gao as a helpful, trustworthy, and selfless person. “He was a very skilled worker, extremely attentive to his work. Whenever a call came down from a guest, Yi Gao would finish it in an instant. He was always willing to share what he had with others. He was a true friend, and we’re really going to miss him.”  

Read the full tribute to Yi Gao here.

Zackery Sandstrom, Metropolitan Club

We are saddened by the loss of Zachery Sandstrom, a bartender at the Metropolitan Club for over 18 years. Known by many as simply “Zac,” he was a loving father, grandfather and husband. Zac was a native of Chadron, Nebraska, who moved to New York as a young man, who eventually became a beloved figure at the Metropolitan Club where he was known as the “glue” that held people together, leaving a lasting impression on his coworkers and the members at the Club.

His friend and coworker, club waiter Jose Collado, recalls that Zac knew every single member no matter where they were from. “He was loved by everyone at the Club,” said Jose. “To be a good bartender, you have to have a good memory, know a lot of stories and be a skill conversationalist, so Zac was very good at his job. Members would come in and saying, ‘I want a martini, but I want Zac to make it.’”

Read Zac's full tribute here.