Army veteran killed by his father on New Year’s Eve

Joseph Leone (Facebook)

Kyle Lawson

Staten Island Advance, N.Y.

Jan. 2—STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — According to family and co-workers of 29-year-old Joseph Leone, he was a hard worker and devoted dad.

Authorities say Leone was shot and killed Friday night by his father, also named Joseph, outside the defendant’s home on Bay Street in Rosebank.

The victim’s wife, who lived with Leone and their three small children in South Carolina, described him as an involved father.

“He loved to play outside with his children. Play the Xbox with his son. Go on adventures with them in the woods,” Kimberly Leone told the Advance/SILive.com on Sunday.

Originally from Brooklyn, Leone served two years in the Army. He was stationed in Georgia where he met his wife. Family said he was visiting his father when the incident unfolded.

“I pinned him blue” said Kimberly, referring to the ceremony for military members graduating basic training.

Leone often referred to on Facebook as his lion cubs.

“I swear on Christ and everything I love that my children will have me in their corner and in their life for as long as I draw breath,” Leone wrote in a November 2020 Facebook post.

According to the victim’s former boss in South Carolina, he was a “hard working family man.”

“He was a good, hard worker … and he loved Star Wars,” said Nicky Holcomb, owner of Oak Ridge Tree Service. “Very saddened to hear of this tragedy and we are praying for everyone.”

While a motive for the shooting remained unclear Sunday, Kimberly Leone described a strained relationship with his own father that traced back to childhood.

“Joe always told me, I don’t want to be like my father. He definitely lived up to that!”

In Leone’s same 2020 Facebook post mentioned earlier in this article, he wrote:

“[My children] won’t know what it’s like to realize in the span of just a few conversations that you actually have no dad at all, while learning to be a dad myself. My queen and I will raise Lions the way my father did, except I will always answer the phone for my children,” he wrote.

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