Financial Woes Blamed in Manhattan Husband-Wife Suicide

Police continue to investigate after two people jumped to their deaths from a Manhattan office building at 5:45 am on July 28.   The couple was identified as 53-year-old Glenn Scarpelli and his 50-year-old wife Patricia Colant.  Scarpelli was a well-known chiropractor who, along with his wife, was dealing with spiraling financial problems including tax liens dating back to 1998.   Public records indicated over $200,000 in debts, most of which stemmed from Mr. Scarpelli's expensive medical education.  In December 2013, a judge ordered him to pay back $62,000 on a loan he took out while Logan College of Chiropractic in Missouri.   They lived near Wall Street with their two children, aged 20 and 19 but chose to commit suicide by jumping from the ninth-floor office building on East 33rd Street where Scarpelli had his office until being forced to close recently.  

After shutting down the entire block to investigate, police found suicide notes in their pockets, both protected in a ziploc bag.   The wife's note asked that their children be cared for but the father's note went into more detail stating that they had "everything in life" but were unable to live with "their financial reality."    As well, their note stated that "we both have medical issues, we just can't afford the health care" though no further details were provided.  

People close to the Scarpellis described them as being devoted to their children as well as being active supporters of the private school both children attended.   The somber funeral was held on August 2 at a New York church packed with family members and friends of the family.  Their 19-year-old son Joseph conducted the eulogy with his older sister Isabella at his side.   

“Mama and papa, I want you to know that I am angry,” he said in the eulogy. “But my anger will never be greater than my unconditional love for you both.”   He concluded the eulogy by repeating a quote his parents had told him for dealing with grief and loss.  "“My parents told me over and over again, I could wake up tomorrow and have every single possession taken from me, I could stand to lose everyone I love, but no one could ever take away my faith.   “I love you mama, I love you papa. Thank you.”



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