Russell F. Siller Obituary: A Bright Light to All Who Knew Him

Russell F. Siller Obituary: A Bright Light to All Who Knew Him

Russell F. Siller, a rare and genuine Renaissance man, teacher, poet, writer and athlete died Friday, Nov. 8, surrounded by his loving family.

Russell was born on August 6, 1942 to Mae and George Siller. Like his parents, who were lay Franciscans, Russ embodied the spirit of simple joy and peace of St. Francis. He is survived by his devoted and loving wife Jacqueline.

Russ and Jacky enjoyed many years of traveling abroad. During their travels sometimes they would stay for long periods to volunteer in places like Israel and India.

Russell F. Siller Obituary: A Bright Light to All Who Knew Him

He was a guiding force in the lives of his brothers Frank (Patricia), George (Glenda) and sisters Janis (Edward), Mary (James), and Regina (Robert). He was pre-deceased by his youngest brother Stephen (survived by Sarah) on September 11, 2001. He was a loving brother-in-law to Michele (Richard) and Denise. He was the most enjoyable and wonderful uncle to 54 nieces, nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews, making each one feel precious and special.

Russell and Jacky raised Stephen from the age of 10 after the death of his mother and father. It was in Stephen’s memory that Russ helped to start the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation. His greatest hope was to “do good” in tribute to his younger brother. Upon the Foundation’s inception, it was Russ who suggested that it have the teaching of St. Francis, “While we have time, let us do good,” as its cornerstone. He has always been the Foundation’s spiritual guide and will continue to be so.

Russell had a tremendous impact in the lives of many people, in particular his students who often expressed that he changed their lives. Russell’s teaching career spanned nearly 50 years, from teaching orphans at St. Michael’s orphanage to 30 years as a high school teacher at St. Peters, Moore High, St. Agnes High School and BOCES. Russell was the director of plays that brought great entertainment to each of these high schools and influenced many of his students into the field. Russell also taught for 15 years at Empire State College as a Professor of Humanities. His brilliance and insight proved to be a gift to many of his college students.

Russell F. Siller Obituary: A Bright Light to All Who Knew Him

When speaking of Russell, his wife Jacky expressed that he was a Christian in every sense of the word, caring for all of humanity. “Russell saw people from the inside, the goodness of people, never judging, always accepting. He knew their soul.”

Visitation and Memorial Service will be held at Harmon Funeral Home, 571 Forest Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10310 on Tuesday, 11/12 from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.

17 Comments. Leave new

  • Deirdre OConnell
    November 10, 2019 1:08 pm

    May he rest in peace….I remember him fondly as my teacher at St. Agnes. God bless.

    Reply
  • Jacky — my prayers and thoughts are with you and your family. I live in Savannah and follow T2T via Jane Grismer who is a friend of mine. Delia Sadler

    Reply
  • Robert Kearns Jr.
    November 10, 2019 1:25 pm

    Thank you for all you have done.. I am a 9/11 firefighter. Your fight matters. Rest in peace.

    Reply
  • It sounds like Russell was a great man. Kind, generous, and very much loved. A man who dedicated his life to others, a true Christian in every sense of the word. May he rest in peace, and his family find solace and comfort in the fact that his work here on earth is done. Now, he has his place with the Lord.

    Reply
  • Prayers to your entire family during this time.

    Reply
  • Antoinette Caffarone
    November 10, 2019 3:54 pm

    May you rest in peace in the loving arms of our Lord & savior. Yo
    u are now with Stephen again & your parents. Our prayers remain with you wife & the Foundation you were such an important part of…..

    Reply
  • Thank you, Mr. Siller, for making an indelible impact on so many of us. The words pouring from so many of your students over the weekend have been overwhelming and beautiful. Your light is a brightness that is rarely seen in this world and it was an honor to have known you. Much love to your wonderful family. May God comfort them all. You did good.

    Reply
  • Rest in peace!

    Reply
  • Christa Loughran-Mellozzo
    November 10, 2019 6:13 pm

    To the entire Siller family, our thoughts and prayers are with you during this time. May you all find comfort in your faith and the wonderful memories you have. May he Rest in Peace and fly high with the Angels who were waiting for him. With Love The Loughran Family from NY

    Reply
  • Elizabeth Crann
    November 10, 2019 6:53 pm

    RIP Russell Siller. I know the Lord will welcome you with open arms.

    Reply
  • Karen Santore Miller
    November 10, 2019 7:10 pm

    My deepest sympathy and prayers to the Siller Family. ?

    Reply
  • God bless the Siller family. Thank you all for your compassion, love, and joy you have given to so many.

    Reply
  • REST IN PEACE BROTHER…..PRAYERS FOR THE COMFORT OF THE FAMILIES….. THANK YOU RUSS & THE ENTIRE SILLER FAMILY FOR ALL YOU DO FOR FDNY …NYPD & OUR MILITARY….Jack & Franny Kleehaas FDNY RET.

    Reply
  • Angie Torres Narvaez
    November 11, 2019 7:32 am

    The Lord knows your pain and will be lifting you and the family in your lost. God Bless the family and will lift you all in prayer. May your sights continue in your journey. Thank You ,Jesus for hearing our prayers.

    Reply
  • God bless the Siller family,
    ” May the Peace of our God which surpasses all understanding keep your heart’s and mind in Christ Jesus.”, our loving Lord and Savior… A loving man, father, brother, uncle and grandfather who obviously knew his beloved Savior by the exemplary and generous life he lived!!!

    I want to thank you for all you are doing for our veterans and I who am also a proud American veteran appreciate what you are doing for the fallen heroes of our country as well as for those lost on 911. And to show my appreciation for what you’re awsome family is doing I on this day will become one of the Thousands of monthly supporters to your immensely supportive foundation…

    Very truly yours
    N.C. Donley (Chuck)

    Reply
  • I worked with Russ at Nassau Boces. He was a wonderful teacher and friend.He was a mentor and guide to all as how one should live their life. Russ was also an advisor for SKILLS USA. At one competition he was working with a young man. The student didn’t have shoes to compete in nor could he have afforded to buy them. Russ took his shoes off and gave them to the student. Russ then walked around all day in socks looking after all his students. It wasn’t till evening till he was able to another pair of shoes. This is who he was, always giving of himself. A truely great man God bless him and his family

    Reply
  • Serena Fusillo Isham
    November 16, 2019 11:39 am

    Mr. Siller impacted so many young students lives. I am sure I am one of hundreds who would say that he was a positive part of their high school years. I have good memories of St Agnes Drama Club. Sorry to the family for their loss.

    Reply

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