Mark R. Scolamiero died unexpectedly Friday, just a month after closing Mr. James Hairstylist, the family business and his life’s work.
“Losing the salon may have had something to do with it,” said James Scolamiero on Sunday night, explaining how his brother was taken by a heart attack while descending a staircase. “He was very upset.”
Mark Scolamiero, 50 years old at the time of his passing, is survived by longtime partner Patrice Stallmer, brothers Steven and James along with many aunts and uncles. Some of those who knew him best weren’t technically in the family.
“I watched Mark grow up,” said hairstylist Marion Sorbello. “I worked for his grandfather, then his father, then him. I’ve known him since he was a baby.”
Sorbello worked at the Mr. James Hairstylist on downtown State Street for 62 years, cutting hair since a decade before Mark was born.
She stayed with the business right up until it closed in February for want of customers.
“He was great to work for,” she said. “He was thoughtful.”
Since the closing, Sorbello retired. She said Scolamiero tried to find other work, “to no avail.”
In a Gazette interview before the shop closed in February, Scolamiero said he was planning to make a few housecalls to loyal customers post-closure but had also applied a countless other salons — even Wal-Mart.
“He was under a lot of stress,” she said. “I don’t think he ever got over the death [Sept. 23, 2011] of his father.”
Mark Scolamiero was born April 4, 1962, to the late Vito and Barbara Scolamiero in Schenectady, where he lived all his life, working 32 years in the family business.
Calling hours will be held at Bekkering-Ellis Funeral Home on Tuesday from 7 to 9 p.m. His funeral will take place at St. Edward’s The Confessor Church on Wednesday at 10 a.m.
Donations can be made to the American Heart Association in his memory.