Sandro Clementi, 79, the founder of Plastican Inc., died Feb. 17 at HealthAlliance Hospital in Leominster.
Clementi, who was born in Corfinio, Italy, immigrated to the United States when he was 20 and spent most of his life working in the plastics industry. In 1956, he purchased Yankee Plastics Inc., a maker of toys and novelties, and turned it into a plastics housewares company, which he later sold to Ronco Industries Inc.
Clementi, known as Sam in the industry, founded Plastican in 1968 to make rigid food packaging. The firm expanded into areas including industrial and retail packaging. Plastican now has facilities in Leominster, Dallas, Phoenix, and Macon, Ga.
He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Liliana; his twin sister, Clelia Arquilla of Rimini, Italy; son John Clementi and his wife, Brigita, of Princeton; and daughter Anna Colangelo and her husband, Francesco, of Lunenburg. John Clementi is president of Plastican.
Sam Clementi was active in the community. He was named ``Commendatore della Republic,'' Italy's highest honor for an expatriate, at a November, 2007, ceremony in Leominster.