MARIO M. CUOMO was born in Queens, New York; he graduated from St. John's University and later received his law degree from St. John's School of Law. He served as confidential legal assistant to Judge Adrian P. Burke of the New York State Court of Appeals and entered private law practice in 1958. He first came to public notice in 1972 when he resolved the Forest Hills housing controversy at the request of Mayor John Lindsay. He became New York's secretary of state in 1975 and was elected lieutenant governor in 1978. He was first elected governor in 1982, and he was reelected in 1986 and 1990. Noted for his powerful keynote address at the 1984 Democratic Convention, Cuomo also authored three books. He chaired the Coalition of Northeastern Governors.
He had settled on a law career and married Matilda N. Raffa, a fellow student. On a scholarship he enrolled in St. John’s Law School; while he studied there, his wife, who survives him, supported them as a teacher.
Besides her and Andrew Cuomo, Mr. Cuomo is survived by four other children, Dr. Margaret I. Cuomo, Maria Cuomo Cole, Madeline Cuomo O’Donohue and Christopher Cuomo, a journalist at CNN; and 14 grandchildren.
Mr. Cuomo returned to Manhattan to work for the law firm of Willkie Farr & Gallagher, write books and give speeches. He grew wealthy and, he said, happy.more » « less