In Our Care

Alan Joseph Sylvia

07/19/1952 - 08/21/2023


Obituary For Alan Joseph Sylvia

Alan J. Sylvia, 71, of Swansea, MA passed way unexpectedly on Monday, August 21, 2023 surrounded by his loving family.

A son of the late Francis J. and Claire (Banville) Sylvia and the beloved husband of Laurie (Burgess) Sylvia, Alan grew up in Rehoboth and Warren before settling in Swansea in his 20’s, where he raised his family.

After graduating from Warren High School, Alan enlisted in the Army National Guard and served for 23 years. He owned and operated his own business for many years before moving on to driving a truck for Ryder until his retirement. Alan was a jack of many trades and would constantly have several projects going on at the same time, which he jumped between, including his 2003 Mustang that he loved to work on and bring to various car shows around the area. In his free time, Alan loved to be out on the water, boating, camping and was an avid NASCAR fan. Most of all, Alan loved his family and spending time with his children, grandchildren, grand-dogs, nieces and nephews. He was known as a great, kind man and will be missed by all who knew him.

In addition to his loving wife, Laurie, Alan is survived by his three daughters, Melanie Higgins and her husband Colin of Barrington, RI, Taryn Sylvia of Bristol, RI and Alyssa Sylvia of Seekonk, MA; his brother, Ronald Sylvia and his wife Debbie of Swansea, MA; his four grandchildren, Logan Higgins, Keira Higgins, Morgan Higgins and Chloe Higgins, as well as many nieces and nephews. He was the brother of the late Edward Gruca.

Services are with Smith Funeral & Memorial Services, 8 Schoolhouse Rd. Warren, RI, where the family will receive relatives and guests for Visitation on Monday, August 28, 2023 from 4-7PM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Tuesday, August 29, 2023 at 9AM in St. Mary of the Bay Church, 645 Main St. Warren, RI. Burial will be at Gate of Heaven Cemetery, 550 Wampanoag Trail, Riverside, RI. For tributes, please visit

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  • 08/30/2023

    My condolences to the entire Sylvia family. I knew Alan through his love of cars and our affiliation in our many years together in the Army National Guard. He was a good man with an infectious smile and laugh. God bless you Alan.

  • 08/29/2023

    RIP my friend it was nice knowing you,will miss the laughs,and political exchange we had almost everyday,only knew you for a few years but i enjoyed every moment of it,RIP my friend...

  • 08/28/2023

    Laurie and family, we're so sorry to hear this news. Alan was such a kind man. May he rest in peace.

  • 08/28/2023

    I have worked with Alan at the Barrington Public Library since he first started here in July of 2015. His bright smile and joviality were such a sunny part of my morning, and he was always there to help my co-workers and me with any job that needed to be done. His ingenuity and craftiness came in handy on countless occasions. All of us here at the library truly cared for Alan, and he will be sorely missed. Sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.

  • 08/27/2023

    To Laurie and her children and to the entire Sylvia family, I offer my condolences in the name of the Sisters of St. Dorothy. May Alan rest in the peace of Christ and continue to look after all of you as he enjoys the rewards of a life lived for others.

  • 08/25/2023

    To Laurie and the entire Sylvia family go my prayers and sincere condolences. And my prayers go to the soul of Alan, a tremendous guy, we would have some great conversations, one of the smartest guys I've known. Rest easy Alan and thanks for your many years of service to our country.

  • 08/25/2023

    As part-time custodian, Alan was a huge asset to Barrington Public Library. He took great pride in his work. "Good enough" was not in Alan's vocabulary. Alan always looked at things with a critical eye; one had to get up pretty early to pull one over on him! He always loved to regale us with stories from his past. I will miss Alan's wonderfully hearty laugh and his smile. My condolences to his family and friends. We're going to have huge shoes to fill at the library. Doug Swiszcz

  • 08/25/2023


  • Ocean Devotion

    Joyce L. Ross sent Ocean Devotion for Alan Joseph Sylvia - August 28, 2023

    With deepest sympathy for your loss. Joyce and Peter Ross

  • Soft Serenity Floor Basket

    Soft Serenity Floor Basket was sent for Alan Joseph Sylvia - August 25, 2023

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