Vincent "Jay" Andretta III
Words fail to describe our infinite sadness and shock over the sudden passing of Jay Andretta, husband of Woodstock Film Festival’s board president, Lauri Andretta, and one of our most generous and dedicated supporters.
Jay’s kind and gentle soul was a shining star, in every way. His kindness touched and forever changed thousands of community members and countless organizations in Woodstock, Kingston and elsewhere.
Life is terribly fragile. Bad things happen to good people. Our hearts are with Lauri, Lindsay and Jimmy. May Jay’s remarkable spirit continue to shine on and make this world a brighter and better place.
Vincent “Jay” Andretta III
Longtime area resident Vincent “Jay” Andretta III, 54, passed away recently at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City from complications after choking at dinner in a restaurant. The Glenford resident will be remembered as a successful businessman, a driven, avid athlete and a loving, dedicated husband, father, son and great friend to many.
Jay is most prominently known for his role serving as President and CEO of Empire Merchants North LLC, a member of The Charmer Sunbelt Group (CSG). He joined the family wine and spirit distribution business, Colony Liquor & Wine Distributors, in 1983 and became president in 1995. He took pride in ensuring his company remained one of the most progressive distributors in the industry, always embracing successes, seeking more opportunities and consistently encouraging himself and his employees to meet new challenges. He loved reading about the history of the liquor business and was on the Board of Directors of the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America.
Jay’s enthusiasm, passion and drive were evident in all areas of his life. He worked hard and played harder. He loved the outdoors and was an all-season athlete. His weekends were spent in the Catskill Mountains biking, hiking, and kayaking. When snow was on the ground he was either skiing down Hunter Mountain’s black diamond trails or snowshoeing in the back country; equally happy whether climbing hand-over-hand up the frozen, steep slopes or coming down the mountainside. He is well known for his four-hour daily physical workouts and pushing boundaries. He is among a select group of people who have climbed the summit of all 35 Catskill Mountain Peaks over 3,500 feet, an endeavor started as a child while hiking with his father. As an adult he rode his bicycle 125 miles from Woodstock to Lake George numerous times and this summer finished the trek in just seven hours.
Jay attended George Washington Elementary School, Bailey Middle School and The Lawrenceville School. At Colgate University he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English in ‘83, where he met a fellow student in a lunch line who would become the love of his life and his future wife. In 1985 Jay married Laurel “Lauri” Salvo in her hometown of Fall River, Massachusetts, and the couple honeymooned in Italy. They celebrated their 29th anniversary this past summer. Jay instilled his passion for excellence in all endeavors to their two children, Vincent “Jim” Andretta IV, 24 and Lindsay S. Andretta, 22, both of New York City. At the same time, he offered them support to flourish and follow their passions. His declarations to them were minimal, but effective, telling them that indeed “Life is good.”
Jay is survived by his wife Lauri, children Jim and Lindsay, father, Vincent J. Andretta Jr. of Kingston; mother, Margaret Andretta, also of Kingston; sisters, Bonnie Andretta of New York City and Sandra Andretta of Hurley, as well as his beloved cockapoo, Remy.
Jay’s impact and support within the community runs deep, with many charitable organizations benefitting from his quiet generosity. Memorial donations may be made to either the Woodstock Film Festival ( http://woodstockfilmfestival.com/inmemoriam.htm) or Gateway Foundation ( www.gatewayindustries.org/donate/paypal), two of many area agencies that Jay supported. In 2008, Gateway named their New Paltz facility the “Jay Andretta Center” in his honor, and in 2010 Jay and Lauri were named Sub-Rosa Honorees by the Gateway Foundation. The Andretta family is planning a private ceremony for family and friends. A. Carr & Son Funeral Home, 65 Lucas Ave., Kingston, is handling the arrangements. A celebration of his life for coworkers will be held in January in New York City. You may leave a condolence for the family at www.KeyserCarr.com
The Woodstock Film Festival is a not-for-profit, 501c3 organization with a mission to present an annual program and year-round schedule of film, music, and art-related activities that promote artists, culture, inspired learning, and diversity.
The CARPE DIEM ANDRETTA Award
in honor of Vincent "Jay" Andretta
The inaugural award will be presented at 16th Annual Woodstock Film Festival Awards Ceremony, October 3, 2015.
Woodstock, NY (January 13, 2015)- The Woodstock Film Festival is proud to announce a new award.
The Carpe Diem Andretta Award will honor longtime area resident Vincent “Jay” Andretta III, 54, who passed away in December 2014. The Glenford resident will be remembered as a successful businessman, a driven, avid athlete and a loving, dedicated husband, father, son and great friend to many including the Woodstock Film Festival.
Jay's favorite quote was Carpe Diem (Seize the Day). His life was a testament to the phrase. The Carpe Diem Andretta Award will be presented to a film that best exemplifies living life to the fullest through character and story development in a full length narrative or documentary film. The winner will receive a cash award and trophy.
The Woodstock Film Festival will always be grateful to Jay, and we hope this award will capture his spirit of kindness, generosity and zest for life.