Obituary of Dr. N. Noel Testa
June 29, 2022
Dr. Noel Testa passed away peacefully at his home with his family by his side on June 29th, 2022. With pride, Noel would tell you he was born on Christmas Day, 1940, in New York City, where he lived his entire life. The child of Liberta “Bobbie” Testa and Dr. Nicholas D. Testa and younger brother of his beloved sister Barbara Ann Testa, Noel grew up in Manhattan and attended elementary school at The Epiphany School and high school at St. Francis Xavier School, where he was the commander of the X-squad. After high school, Noel attended the College of the Holy Cross and then went on to New York Medical College, where he not only received his medical degree but met his wife of 54 years, Maureen.
In 1968 Maureen and Noel were married at the church of St. Ignatius Loyola in Manhattan. Shortly after, Noel was drafted into the Air force, where he served as a Surgeon and held the rank of Captain at Westover Air force Base in Chicopee Falls, MA. After the birth of their first son, Paul, Noel and Maureen moved back to New York City, where Noel did his Orthopedic Surgery residency at NYU. Following that, Noel did a fellowship in Adult Reconstructive Surgery at the New England Baptist Hospital in Boston. In 1973, Noel and Maureen gave birth to their second son, Nicholas.
After his fellowship, Noel returned to NYU Medical Center to join the faculty of the Department of Orthopedics. He was an active clinician and educator with an extensive private practice focusing on hip and knee reconstruction. He served as Chief of Adult Reconstructive Surgery for many years. He prided himself on teaching the residents how to be good physicians and ensuring they matured into caring clinicians. Noel strove to go above and beyond to get to know the residents and their families, focusing on their wellbeing.
In 2001 Noel transitioned from his private practice and became the Chief of the Orthopedic Service at Bellevue Hospital. Noel initially thought this position would be a short-term role that would transition him into retirement, but that was far from the truth. Working at Bellevue, serving the most vulnerable patients of New York City, ended up being one of the greatest joys of Noel’s life. In this role, he was responsible for the continued growth of the service and expanding its presence as a leading department in the New York City Health and Hospital system, until his retirement in 2015.
While Noel took great pride in being a physician, his greatest love was for his family. Noel loved his wife deeply, and in their 54 years together, they traveled the world, making friends around the globe. Noel was proud of both his sons who followed in his footsteps - both became physicians. Noel always liked to see the family around the table expand and welcomed with open arms his daughter-in-law, Dr. Mariko Ishimori, her sister Junie Ishimori and Paul’s partner Kevin Healy. While Noel played many roles throughout his long and full life, the one that he enjoyed most was that of grandfather (aka Pacca) to his two beloved granddaughters, Kira, age 13, and Mika, age 11.
Those that knew Noel well were forever changed by his generosity, love, and unwavering commitment to others. It is impossible to know all the people that Noel had a positive influence on, as his reach and impact extended far beyond even that which his family is aware. In this time of passing, we have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of not just love and support but of people coming up to us sharing stories that all start with “Noel helped me so much…”. We hope that you can share your stories in the guest book as it brings our family much joy to hear all the lives he touched.
There will be a gathering with the family on Tuesday, July 5th, from 4 to 7 pm at Greenwich Village Funeral Home located at 199 Bleecker Street in Manhattan.
On Wednesday, July 6th at 10:30 am, there will be a funeral Mass at Church of the Holy Family located at 315 E 47th Street in Manhattan.
The family requests that donations in his memory be made to the newly established:
N. Noel Testa Fund for Orthopedic Resident Wellness at NYU Langone Orthopedics.
Donations can be made through this link: https://nyulangone.org/give/fundraise/noeltesta
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This is a very sad news. Dr. Testa will be greatly missed. I have always considered him a god father for me. A unique remarkable gentleman and surgeon, an angel in disguise. I am forever grateful not just for the surgeries he did for me as a child but moreover for how he treated me with humanity as a child and asked about me and visited me daily along my recovery in NY for 7 months. He impacted and influenced all my life and always acted like a father. He has been a vivid real model and My heart is wrenching his loss. Our deepest condolences for Maureen, Paul, Noel and the whole family. I would have really loved to attend the funeral and see him one last time. He means a lot to me and my whole family ?. May his soul rest in peace and may Paradise Embrace him with all the goodness and the kindness within his heart and the legacy he has left behind. He has been always one of my Heroes and will always be ??Dr. Dahlia Mostafa, Ahmed Mostafa & Ramsey Mostafa
Posted by: Dahlia Mostafa - Calgary, Alberta - Friend July 2, 2022
My sincere condolences for your loss. Noel was such a wonderful soul. He mentored me at times to be a better person and supported me through a very difficult time in my life. Although we lost touch in the recent years he was and will remain in my thoughts
Posted by: Michael Whitehead - Wilton, NY - Friend July 2, 2022
Dear Dr. Maureen Matturri (Testa): My wife, Carol B., and I extend our condolences to you. Decades ago, you (together with our scrupulous gyn.) took seriously and pro-actively an otherwise "iffy" endometrial issue, rather than adopt the more typical "wait-an-see" approach too often dismissive of women's health concerns. Unfortunately, Carol did have endometrial cancer. Thanks to you, the cancer had been caught so early that my wife required neither radiation nor chemo. She was completely cured by a swift surgery. Your trusty, former "trainee", Dr. Marie Leong continues to do you proud. We were immensely fortunate to have you as Carol's radiologist. Your husband, Noel, was immensely fortunate to have you as his wife. We are so sorry to have read of your loss in the NYT. We will always be grateful to you, to science, and to the best of the medical profession, of which Noel appears to have been one. Peace to you and yours, Bracha N. Bomze & Carol B., NYC
Posted by: Bracha N. BOMZE - New York, NY - Acquaintance July 3, 2022
Dr. Testa was a long time visitor of St. Maarten along with his beautiful wife Maureen. Since hurricane Irma we have not seen them back. Know that you're greatly missed. From your friends of Oyster Bay Beach Resort. Rest in Paradise.
Posted by: Mincha Brown - St. Maarten, - Friend July 4, 2022
It was an honor to have Noel in my life first in business, and shortly after a long time friend. Stern in business to get it right for his patients, always organized, and in friendship always out to have a good time. He knew how to strike that balance in his life and with family always at the forefront . He will be sorely missed.
Posted by: Phil Matinale - Westbury, NY - Friend July 4, 2022
Noel was a year ahead of me at Xavier HS. He was an outstanding cadet and an excellent role model. In reading his obituary, I see that he continued to be an excellent role model throughout his life. He rests now in GOd's peace. I pray God's peace and strength for his family.
Posted by: Daniel Gatti, SJ - BRONX, NY - Friend July 5, 2022
Noel and his roommate Mike Nocero lived next door at Alumni Hall at Holy Cross. Noel always had a smile on his face and a good word to say. He was a crusader then and after reading his obituary, a crusader all his life. Sincerest condolences to his family.
Posted by: Russell Fanelli - Longmeadow , MA - Friend July 8, 2022
Frank, james, john and myself all offer sincere condulances. We all attended Epiphany but La Salle was our school of choice. our mom Evelyn had a hip replacement performed by Dr Testa in the early 70"s and 4 years ago passed away at 107 the hip never bothered her. My (george) wife in the 80's had a hip and two knees also done. I developed and eye problem directed me to his sisters eye doctor in gramercy park(Dr Angeoleti) who saved my eye sight. Finally moving out to Long Island we needed an orthopedist and was recommended by Noel to a Dr Capozzi who knew him well and treated my wife as Noel has all those years. In closing its amazing how for over 70 years he was a part (big) part of our lives
Posted by: george jr Matranga - williston Pk, New York - Friend August 13, 2022