Lighthouse 02

James J. Santaniello

January 15, 2020


James Joseph Santaniello (Jim, Jimmy) passed away in Needham, on January 15th, 2020. Jimmy courageously battled Stage IV pancreatic cancer for four months. He was 58 years old.

Jimmy was born in Westerly, RI on March 19th, 1961 to parents Salvatore and Mary Santaniello. He has three sisters, Patricia Beffa-Negrini, Joanne Santaniello, and Karen Brender. Jimmy was raised in Mystic, CT.

Jimmy married his “Jersey Girl” Shelly Warman on August 16, 1986 in Basking Ridge, NJ. They fell in love at Connecticut College during Jimmy’s sophomore and Shelly’s freshman year.

As newlyweds, Jimmy and Shelly lived in Norwalk, CT. By 1990, they moved to Greenwich, CT and started their family. Michael James(29), Nicholas Ryan(26), and Kathryn Lynn(23) were all born in Greenwich before the family moved to Needham in 1996. As the children grew, Jim encouraged and supported their musical and athletic activities. He helped coach soccer and baseball teams, and used his financial talents to be the treasurer of a few ice hockey teams. Jim attended many concerts over the years, and served as unpaid “roadie” for Michael and Katie’s many musical performances.

Jim was an incredible athlete. He played soccer, basketball, and baseball for Fitch High School in Groton, CT. He was Connecticut College’s first athlete to captain two sports, basketball and soccer. After college, Jim went on to play semi-pro soccer with the Moodus Football Club. Jim traveled to Ireland and England with his Moodus buddies, and played in yearly summer tournaments in Oneonta, NY. As he got older, Jim continued to play soccer in the New England Over-the Hill Soccer League, first playing with the “Over 30” players, and gradually aging up to the “over 50” league.

Jim graduated from Connecticut College in 1983 where he majored in Mathematical Sciences and later earned a master’s degree from RPI in Computer Science. Jim began his career working for Naval Underwater Systems Center in New London, CT, and then for Genigraphics in Norwalk, CT. He transitioned to New York City and the financial services industry, working first for JP Morgan and then for ING Bank. His financial and risk management expertise led him to Boston where he worked for Bank of Boston. Jim spent the final 15 years of his career working at Fidelity Investments, retiring in 2016.

Jim’s favorite extra-curricular activities were soccer and fishing. He loved spending family vacations on the Jersey Shore, and more recently in Westerly, RI. He loved the yearly Father’s Day fishing trip to Lake George, NY with the Warman clan, and time at Lake Nubanusit in NH with the Santaniello crew. Jim loved to cook delicious pasta meals for a big crowd, which he learned from his mother. He also enjoyed being a faithful member of Grace Lutheran Church for over 20 years, where he served as an usher. Jim adored his Jack Russell Terrier, Spot, who died in 2017. Jimmy requested that he be buried with Spot’s ashes.

Jimmy is predeceased by his father, Salvatore, and survived by his mother, Mary. He leaves behind his loving wife, Shelly, their three children, Michael, Nicholas, and Katie, his daughter-in-law, Mary, and Micah James, his only beloved grandchild! Jim is also survived by his sisters; Patsy, Joanne, and Karen. He is survived by Shelly’s parents: Kenneth and Sarah Warman, and many supportive sister-in-laws and brother-in-laws: David, Scott, Linda, Timothy, Angela, and Kenneth III. Jim was also proud to be Uncle Jimmy to: Shannon, Samantha, Hanna, Lauren, Matthew, Kenneth IV, Jack, and William.

Jim will be sorely missed by his family, friends, teammates, co-workers, and the members of Grace Lutheran Church. Rest in peace, James Joseph.

His funeral service will be held on Mon Jan 20 at 11 Am in Grace Lutheran Church 543 Greendale Ave Needham followed by interment in Needham Cemetery. Relatives and friends are kindly invited. Visiting hours will be on Sun from 2-6 PM in the Eaton Funeral Home 1351 Highland Ave Needham.

In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the: Lustgarden Foundation for Pancreatic Cancer Research at or VNA Hospice & Palliative Care/Tippett Hospice Home in memory of James to support patient care at VNA Hospice & Palliative Care, Stanley R. Tippett Hospice Home, 920 South St., Needham, MA 02492, or online at

To send flowers to James' family, please visit our floral section.

To send flowers to James' family, please visit our floral section.


January 19, 2020

2:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Eaton Funeral Home
1351 Highland Avenue
Needham, MA 02492

Funeral Service
January 20, 2020

11:00 AM
Grace Lutheran Church
543 Greendale Ave.
Needham, MA 02492

January 20, 2020

12:15 PM
Needham Cemetery
128 Nehoiden St.
Needham, MA 02494

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