Mr. Popovici was the son of George and Ecaterina Popovici and was born in New York City on April 5, 1930. He went to high school in Bucharest, Romania, and returned to his native country in 1948 as the first American citizen allowed to exit communist Romania. He obtained a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the City College in New York City, and a master’s degree in industrial management from Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ.
He worked first for ITT Laboratories and Litton Industries in New Jersey for eight years as an engineer and later as an engineering manager specializing in Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) and scientific instrumentation for oceanographic applications.
In 1964 he joined Raytheon’s Submarine Signal Division in Portsmouth, to create a new commercial operation. He served primarily as manager of Ocean Systems Center, and then as program manager for mine-hunting systems with the acquisition of the Navy’s SQQ-32 mine-hunting sonar in partnership with the notable French defense contractor, Thomson CSF. After the initial contract award in 1982, Mr. Popovici semi-retired for medical reasons and became the instructor for program management and project engineering courses for more than 150 managers and engineers through 1988.
Mr. Popovici retired from Raytheon in 1990 after 26 years of service, completing a 34-year career in engineering management and business development. In 1994, he self-published his autobiography, Stonewalled — My Corporate Experience. During the late 1990s, he served as a business consultant for a new technology start-up company in Florida.
Mr. Popovici was active in the Eastern Orthodox Church, serving as Sunday school teacher for 18 years, and then as committee chairman for St. Demetrius Orthodox Church in Naples, FL. In 1997 he joined St. Paul Orthodox Church in Naples, FL, as one of the early co-founders. He also authored the Grandparents Book, leaving it as a legacy to his seven grandchildren and all the generations that follow.
In addition to his beloved wife of 58 years, he is survived by his loving children, Adina Desaulniers and her husband George of Etna, NH, George Popovici of Portsmouth, and Rev. Phil Popovici of Naples, FL. He was also the grandfather of Christine, Andrea, Nicholas, Stephen, Alexandra, David and Gregory.
Visiting hours are respectfully omitted. His funeral will be held Thursday, Aug. 7, at the Greek Orthodox Church of the Annunciation, Oaklawn Avenue, Cranston, at 10 a.m. Burial will be at North Burial Ground, Bristol.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, 575 Scarsdale Road, Crestwood, NY 10707 or St. Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church, 2425 Rivers Road, Naples, FL 34120.
For online condolences, shared memories, information, directions go to www.sansonefuneralhome.com.