In Loving Memory

John Peter Palughi

December 28, 1941 - January 18, 2019


On early Friday January 18,2019 – My Wonderful Uncle – John Peter Pagliughi/Palughi – Passed away after a near 20-year struggle with 4 cancer assaults & The resulting reconstructive surgeries. He was born December 28,1941 – making him 77. Yes – He spelled his name both The Old Italian Way & The New American Way – A practice he used – as His Father did – That is John Anthony Pagliughi/Palughi Sr. – yes – My name is John Anthony (Tony) Palughi II – I’m named after My Grandfather. There was some thinking that “An American Way of a Family Name”, would ease assimilation – to The New Country. The Family History goes back even farther back – The Pagliughi Folk are descended – on the Paternal Side from Bedouins from The Tripoli part of Africa. Yes – The Profit was A Land Pirate & My Folk were Sea Raiders. My Grandfather – told me The Raiding Pirates where shipwrecked on The Upper West Coast of The Italian Peninsula – Close to The City State of Genoa. O.K. the former pirates are stranded & they are to be killed on capture – because nobody likes murderous pirates & As A Clan/Family – the decision was made to conform, to be quiet & They did – A lesson I’ve yet to learn. Time goes on – The Noble Families of Genoa wants to collect tax from the now civilized, converted Catholic & another decision was made. The Clan moved to Frodolor – in The Hill Country of The Po River Valley (Not finding this on An Italian Map), which is 2 days ride by donkey to Piacenza – The Place where The 1st Crusade was declared.  The Genoise were informed to come get The Tax – The way I heard it – They never did – the intricacies of Lombardi Politics are beyond me. The Brothers to come over here – to have a better life & as time advanced – Uncle Frank (Perhaps there is a french side of the family I do not  know about) Uncle Mike, Uncle Joe & Pa Pa Johnny (I may have left someone out) – around 1903ish. Uncle Mike stayed in New York & Uncle Joe & Johnny came to Mobile (My Grandfather wanted to go to Alaska – Joe told him to stay here & he did. He married Missouri Elizabeth Nichols. Now Maternal History. The Nichols Clan are mostly Of The Cherokee Nation. The Horror of A President Andrew Jackson resisted & expelled The Invading British – Yes – With good Cherokee help – As a Thank You To The Nations – He put The Cherokee on The Trail of Tears & Grandmas Folk left that lovely excursion & headed South. It appears That The Cherokees – had a written language, published a printed newspaper & there was/is Gold in The Georgia Hills. The Palughi Clan – have gone from both extremes – Murderous Slavers – interested is short term gain – to the bottom of the shoe middling poverty – seeking to be unnoticed – with simple endurance, to persevere – perhaps as a clear family unit or perhaps not – time will tell.  Grandpa & Grandma had 2 sons – My Father – Delano Joseph Palughi & My Uncle Peter. Peter attended Lienkauf Elementary, then he attended McGill High School, then he attended The University of Alabama in Birmingham – for a year – then He was in The United States Army. He was trained for intelligence work – He received dispatches & relayed information on “The Board” in The Operations Room – Yes – He could write backwards & in rapid legible script. He told about seeing Johnny Cash being arrested in El Paso, Texas – He said “I never saw a fellow as popped up on pills & drunk – as that guy.” With An Honorable Discharge – He was hired to The Mobile Plant for A.L.C.O.A. A Trade Unionist – like myself – He worked as A Millwright – until The Plant closed. My Uncle took care of His aging Father – Then His aging Mother. He finished out his career in the Tennessee Plant. An Annual Health Exam – A Lump was discovered – on the left side of his neck. On to M.D. Anderson – The Best Head & Neck Facility In the world – Aggressive Radiation, Chemotherapy & an 11 hour operation was performed. This first radiation – dictated his resulting treatments. I’ve no initials – in front or in back on my name – Radiation cooks the cancer & the healthy tissue – after 2 rounds of radiation – the recovery was as bad as the disease. The things a healthy person takes for granted – Swallowing – a no go – no swallowing – no eating – a feeding tube was installed – for years – nothing by mouth & My Uncle was better cook – than I am with training. A paralyzed vocal cord – all communication – with a dry erase board. Loss of tear producing – constant ointments to lubricate his eyes – My observant Brother – Vincent Gregory Palughi noticed that – when asleep – his eyes did not close – I was with him & I never noticed this. One procedure was to install Gold weights in his eye lids – to help with moisture. Thank You All – for taking time to remember My Uncle – He was quiet & usually of good humor – even when sick. He was Catholic – until his end & in general – He liked People.

A Memorial Mass will be held on Saturday, February 9, 2019 at St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church, 2605 Spring Hill Avenue, Mobile, AL.  Visitation will begin at 9:00 a.m. until the 10:00 a.m. Mass.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the American Cancer Society,

Expressions of condolence for the family may be made at


  1. Tommy Nelson

    My name is Tommy Nelson. First, thank you John for the thoughtful rememberance of your uncle “Pete” as he was known to me. At one point in our youth we were probably best friends. Mr and Mrs Palaughi lived close by and I spent time with them on Magnolia River in rustic and glorious surroundings. I often visited their home on Michigan Avenue and still vividly recall seeing your Grandfather and Grandmother there. I knew your dad Delano also. I am so sorry to hear that Pete has passed away and the difficulties he endured. Surely God refined him to gold in his trial of fire.

    • John A Palughi

      Thank Sir – I don’t know where you live – I’m having A Mass At St Johns in Magnolia Springs.

  2. Connie Cook

    I am so sorry for your loss Tony. I remember Uncle Pete very well. He was a kind man.

  3. Jean Wolchina

    God Bless Peter! I am Joe Palughi’s great niece by way of his wife Pearl Palughi and knew Peter very well! He was a wonderful person and will be sadly missed! Thank you Tony for the story as I have never heard about this! God rest his soul!

  4. Jean Turner Wolchina

    God Rest his soul!!! I knew Peter very well as I am family from Joe Palughi’s side through Peral Palughi!!! I am their great niece. Peter was SUCH a wonderful man!!!! He is now in God’s care!!!! I never heard that story and want to say THANK YOU!!!!

  5. Lorrie Hilburn Lennon

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I too am related through Joe and Pearl but never got to know them as we went with my mother when she returned to England. I have been doing my family tree which includes your family. I am Jean Turner Wolchina’s cousin and Pearl Palughis great niece and live in Birmingham England. Thank you for sharing your very interesting story. Rest in Peace John Peter Palughi now in Gods care.

  6. Evelyn Weeks (Collins)

    I was so very Sorry to hear that Pete ( as most of his magnolia friends called hi.) had passed. We had lots of good times with him, we were all so glad when he would come over on week- ends. it was fun to ride in the boat with him ,as he showed off his skiing tricks. All the boys would take turns. I will miss him very much and I will continue to pray for him every night and hope he connect with my brother (Jerome) and my husband as they were good friends. Deep appreciation for the article learned a lot. ( I am Don Collins sister )


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *