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Jay Cimino, Catholic businessman and philanthropist, dies Feb. 24 at 87
Veronica Ambuul
/ Categories: Diocesan News, Obituaries

Jay Cimino, Catholic businessman and philanthropist, dies Feb. 24 at 87

By Veronica Ambuul

COLORADO SPRINGS. Gerald “Jay” Cimino, the retired president and CEO of the Phil Long Dealerships who was known throughout the Pikes Peak region for his philanthrophic activities, died Feb. 24 in Colorado Springs. The Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on March 1 at 10 a.m. at St. Paul Church. Due to the number of people who are anticipated to attend the funeral, it will also be livestreamed on the St. Paul Parish website at https://stpaulcos.org/livestream. Interment follows at Shrine of Remembrance. Bishop James Golka will offer the St. Patrick’s Day Mass on March 16 at 9:30 a.m. at St. Mary’s Cathedral for the repose of his soul.

Cimino was born April 20, 1936 in Trinidad, Colorado, and attended Catholic schools from first through 12th grade. He credited his Catholic upbringing and education for his values, competitive spirit and sense of pride.

“Our family — a big Italian family — was wrapped around the church and school. My grandfathers were from Italy, and they were very proud to be American. They passed that to us — the pride of being Catholic, the pride of being American, the pride of being Italian,” he told the Herald in a January 2007 interview.

“At school, I was the kind of kid who was fun-loving and got into a little trouble, but it was a wonderful experience. The Sisters of Charity taught us to have a mission for your life and a value system,” Cimino said. “We also learned to be competitive.”

He married Emily Roitz Cimino on Oct. 15, 1960 and the couple had four children: Gina, Vince, Mike and Laurie.

After graduating from the University of Denver, Cimino worked for automotive dealerships in Pueblo and New Mexico before becoming a partner in the Phil Long dealerships in Colorado Springs in 1975.

Among the philanthropic initiatives Cimino supported were the Grace Center for Athletics and Community Service in Colorado Springs and the Mount Carmel Wellness and Community Center in Trinidad.

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