John N. Raposa, 54, of Bristol

Posted 1/5/22

John N. Raposa was everyone’s go-to guy.

Mr. Raposa was a devoted family man and dedicated business executive who gave his time and energy tirelessly to others. His knowledge, skill and …

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John N. Raposa, 54, of Bristol


John N. Raposa was everyone’s go-to guy.

Mr. Raposa was a devoted family man and dedicated business executive who gave his time and energy tirelessly to others. His knowledge, skill and ingenuity became the resources that helped his family’s business thrive for a third generation. His deep commitment to family members and friends helped them solve problems, seize opportunities and make the most of their shared lives.

Mr. Raposa, who lived in Bristol, R.I., died on Jan. 2, 2022, from complications of the COVID-19 virus. He was 54 years old.

Mr. Raposa grew up in Seekonk, Mass., and spent his summers as a boy in Westport, Mass. He quickly developed a love of the water on the Westport River. At an early age, he was allowed to row a small dinghy tethered to a floating dock by a long line. He rowed for hours. Soon, he graduated to power boats and later helped his father with larger sailing vessels.

Mr. Raposa also became interested in all things mechanical at an early age and spent many hours with his grandfather, the late Nicholas Russo, learning how to repair things in his basement workshop in Portland, Maine. Later, Westport neighbor Vance Phillips and friend Don Ringuette, a top-notch mechanic, helped instill Mr. Raposa’s keen interest in cars and trucks. The skills he developed would become important later in his working life.

Mr. Raposa graduated from Providence College in 1989 and went to work full time in his family’s business, J.A.R. Bakers’ Supply, Inc. of Lincoln, R.I., a regional leader in the food service supply industry for 75 years. He had first been employed at J.A.R. while still in high school, working in the company’s warehouse and on its trucks.

Over time, he became deeply involved in every aspect of the company’s operations. He led its trucking business, improved information technology systems and even made deliveries when necessary. Later, as the company’s operations manager, he would routinely work 16-hour days making sure J.A.R could deliver the highest possible level of service to hundreds of customers.

Mr. Raposa was also responsible for his family business’ rollout of new business ventures, like Apple Specialties, a fresh apple processing company, and Krisppe Products, which developed proprietary mixes for everything from clam cakes to macaroon cookies.

In his twenties, Mr. Raposa met Donna Ramos and the couple was married in 1991. They settled in Bristol and their son, Nicholas, was born in 1996. The family enjoyed trips to sunny climates, where a souped-up rental car always awaited them.

An animal lover, Mr. Raposa was also devoted to his dogs, Kelly, and the late Spotty.

Mr. Raposa is survived by his parents, John Philip and Camilla (Russo) Raposa of Westport; his wife, Donna; his son, Nicholas, of Bristol; and his sister, Laura Raposa, and brother-in-law, Steven Syre, of Scituate, Mass. He also leaves many loving aunts, uncles, cousins and life-long friends.

A wake will be held on Sunday, Jan. 9, from 2 to 5 p.m. at George C. Lima Funeral Home, 367 High St., Bristol, RI. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Monday, Jan. 10, at 11 a.m. at St. Elizabeth’s Church, 57 Wood St., Bristol, RI. Burial is in Gate of Heaven Cemetery, 550 Wampanoag Trail, East Providence, RI.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate a donation made in John’s memory to the Westport River Watershed Alliance, 493 Old County Road, Westport, MA, 02790.

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