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Thomas Romantini Talks About Richard

Excerpted from SouthPhillyReview.com by Lorraine Gennaro, March 10, 2005

Richard Petrone Jr. always loved attending rock concerts, said childhood friend Thomas Romantini.

“He was just a happy-go-lucky guy,” he said. “He didn’t make enemies. He was not an aggressive person…”

Petrone would never willingly leave the area without making contact because he is very close to his family and 14-year-old daughter, Angela, from a previous relationship, Romantini said.

“It’s not like him to do anything like that – to not be in touch with anybody for days,” he said.

Petrone ran his father’s bakery, Viking Pastries in Ardmore, where he worked six days a week from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. He talked to his father and mother, Marge, at least once a day, and also was close to his [sister Christine, and aunt Lisa].

When Petrone was not working, he spent time with his daughter, whom he raised. Angela’s name is tattooed on Petrone’s arm.

“She was his whole world,” Romantini said.

[Danielle], who is separated from her husband, Joseph, has a 22-month-old son, Joseph Imbo 3d.

Judging from the dozens of Internet postings by Imbo’s friends, [Danielle] was well-liked and full of life.

“Danielle is the sweetest, nicest person I have ever met in my life,” one friend wrote. “Her family is one of a kind. Someone has to know something. Please bring her home! She is loved by everyone who knows her.”

Friends also recounted the young woman with the “beautiful smile” and “infectious laugh.”

Imbo sang in an all-male South Jersey-based rock band called The Schoolboys.

A local woman who knew the couple and dated Petrone briefly when the two were in high school also is shaken by their disappearance. She met Petrone, who attended Bishop Eustace in Cherry Hill, through mutual South Philly friends.

“He was just a great guy, very sweet,” the woman said.

And that’s also how Romantini describes Petrone.

“He’s kind of free-spirited and always looking to have a good time,” he said. “He always had a smile on his face, even in the worst of situations.”

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