Cover photo for Phyllis Minissale's Obituary

Phyllis Minissale

PHYLLIS A. MINISSALE (nee Lanese) age 72, passed away September 16, 2021; beloved companion for 30 years of Michael Amato; loving mother of Melissa Falsone (husband Carl) and Lisa Potts (husband Brian); devoted grandmother of Alicia and Ella Falsone, and Brian and Sammy Potts; cherished daughter of the late Gaeton and Josephine (nee Urbanski) Lanese; dearest sister of the late Lucille Casarona; treasured aunt of Joseph Casarona and Jennifer Ezerosky and great-aunt and friend of many. Longtime dedicated owner and operator of Gaetano’s Restaurant in Mayfield Heights.

Phyllis grew up in South Euclid and would later raise her family in Mayfield Heights.  Once her children were grown, she started the next chapter of her life.  At 50 years of age, she founded Gaetano’s Italian Restaurant of Mayfield Heights.  It was February of 2001 and her dream became a reality.  Using her cooking and hosting skills, she successfully brought people together for 20 years serving countless patrons and making her staff into family friends. Her food brought many together. Gaetano’s may have been her home six days each week, but Sundays she treasured her family.  Graciously, Phyllis provided a Sunday feast of quantity and quality for all who walked through her door. This is what was most important to her.  She always gave sound advice to both her family as well as her loyal, longstanding staff while sitting around the table. She was the epitome of finding her passion and living it in all aspects of life.

The last 3 years of her life she battled cancer courageously and continued to live life on her own terms.  Phyllis was above and beyond all, selfless.  Never missing a beat and continuing to live her life, she focused on family, friends, food and fun.

Cremation by DeJohn Crematory.

A Reception to Celebrate Phyllis’ life will be held on SUNDAY OCTOBER 24, 2021 from 1-5 PM – sharing of stories and memories at 3 PM – at the NEW  Gaetano’s Restaurant, 2747C SOM Center Rd, Willoughby Hills.


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Phyllis Minissale, please visit our flower store.


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