June 20, 1938 - June 25, 2020
Born in upstate New York
Resided in Salinas, California
Gene was born June 20, 1938 in upstate New York. His family moved to California when Gene was a child. He attended local schools and graduated from Salinas High School. After high school Gene proudly served in the United State Navy on the USS Saint Paul. He was a lifelong patriot who loved his country. He was proud to fly the American Flag at his house and his office.
Upon his return to Salinas, Gene met and married the love of his life, Andrea (Rusty) Cochetti. They spent 45 wonderful years together before Rusty passed away in 2007. In the years following Rusty’s death, Gene was lucky to find many years of companionship with his friend, Joan Nucci who cared for him tirelessly thru many surgeries.
In 1977, Gene founded Body Shop by Gene Cochetti and ran the shop with his son Chris for decades. Gene was actively involved in the business until he became ill. He loved spending time with family and friends, especially at his Nacimiento lake house. Oak Shores was his home away from home and he loved boating and hanging out at the lake. Gene loved to cook and was at home in the kitchen or at the BBQ, always serving as head chef for family gatherings.
Gene was an active member of the local community. He spent hours volunteering for the Salinas Steinbeck Youth Football Organization, volunteered at the California Rodeo for many years, a member of the Salinas Elks Lodge, Founding Member of the Cherrie’s Jubilee Car Show, active member and Usher at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Spreckels and longtime supporter of the SVMH Ladies Trail Ride in memory of his wife.
Gene’s true passion beyond family was cars. He not only poured himself into his business, but really loved restoring classic cars and showing them off at car shows. He was a straightforward, meticulous, and genuine man which showed in everything he said and did.
Gene Cochetti was a larger than life personality who brought great energy to any event or activity. Gene was a beloved brother, father and grandfather and a true friend who will be remembered and missed by many.
Gene is survived by his brother Robert (Bobby) Cochetti, his son Chris Cochetti (Gina), daughter Gena Maino (Tom), and his four grandchildren; Jake, Sophia, Tayah and Siena.
He was preceded in death by his wife Rusty and his older brother Earl Cochetti.
Thank you to Dr. Dacus, Dr. Ruddo, Nurse Peggy and many others who helped him during his numerous surgeries in the last few years.
A viewing will be held at Struve and Laporte Funeral Chapel on Wednesday, July 1, 2020 at 12:00pm until 6:00pm. Due to current restrictions, private funeral services are being held.
Salinas, California 93901