Joseph J. Fauliso, the longtime lieutenant governor who died Wednesday at age 98, was praised Thursday in messages of sympathy from political leaders.
“Through his years of public service in the State Senate and as Lieutenant Governor, Joe made a tremendous impact on the State of Connecticut and became an institution at the State Capitol,” Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman said in a joint statement. “He inspired so many and left a legacy that will last generations. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.”
“Joe Fauliso was a remarkable public servant, whose inspiring oratory was exceeded only by his deep and abiding commitment to the people of his beloved State of Connecticut,” said former U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman, who became majority leader of the Democrat-controlled state Senate in 1975, when Fauliso rose to Senate President Pro Tempore.
“He was a man of deeply held beliefs whose commitment to public service was a lifelong passion, as evidenced by the respect he earned from both sides of the political aisle and his legacy of accomplishment in all three branches of Connecticut government, which endures to this day,” Lieberman said. “I learned so much from Joe about legislation, politics, and life during our ten years in the State Senate together.”
“It was a particular honor and privilege to be by his side leading the State Senate in what came to be called ‘the two Joes’ team for the six historic years that Ella Grasso was Governor of Connecticut. Hadassah and I send our condolences and love to Ann and the extended Fauliso family,” Lieberman said.
When Grasso resigned on the last day of 1980, 36 days before her death from cancer, Fauliso automatically rose from the top Senate post to become lieutenant governor, the position William A. O’Neill held before succeeding Grasso as governor. O’Neill and Fauliso stayed in those top posts until January 1991, winning two full terms in their own right.
State Democratic Party Chair Nancy DiNardo said: “Yesterday, we lost a friend, a leader, and a dedicated public servant. In a career lasting more than half a century, Joe Fauliso moved Connecticut forward. One of the longest serving Lieutenants Governor in our state, he held office at almost every level. As he fought tirelessly for progress, he inspired a new generation of Democratic leaders and public servants. He will be deeply missed, but his legacy will no doubt live on in Connecticut history.”
Secretary of the State Denise Merrill said: “Today I join colleagues in government and politics, and people across the state, in mourning the passing of former Lieutenant Governor Joseph J. Fauliso. Lt. Gov. Fauliso’s political career spanned six remarkable decades in state history, from his election to the Hartford Board of Aldermen in 1943 to the end of his final term as lieutenant governor in 1991. In between, his public service included time as a municipal court judge and state senator, rising to senate president. He spent most of his adult life in the service of his state, even postponing his retirement when duty called. His dedication to service, his eloquence and his mentoring of others serve as fine examples to those who follow.”
The funeral will be Tuesday at 10 a.m. in St. Peter Claver Church, 47 Pleasant St., West Hartford., with a Mass of Christian Burial celebrated by Most Reverend Peter A. Rosazza, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of the Archdiocese of Hartford. Burial will follow at Fairview Cemetery, 200 Whitman Ave., West Hartford.
Calling hours are Monday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Molloy Funeral Home, 906 Farmington Ave., West Hartford. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to the Fidelco Guide Dog Foundation, 103 Vision Way in Bloomfield, or the House of Bread, 1453 Main Street in Hartford. Online expressions of sympathy may be made at www.molloyfuneralhome.com
Fauliso’s full obituary can be found here.