[Home Page] [This Week] [Classifieds] [Legals] [Obituaries] [Newsstands] [Subscriptions] [Advertising] [Deadlines] [About Us] [FAQ] [Archives] [Community Links] [Contact Us]

Obituaries Archives — The Altamont Enterprise January 26, 2012

Anthony J. DeGaetano

EAST BERNE — A lawyer and a father, Anthony J. DeGaetano cared deeply about his own children and about the children he protected in court.

A resident of East Berne for 38 years, he died unexpectedly in his home on Thursday, Jan. 19, 2012. He was 87.

Mr. DeGaetano was an attorney in private practice for more than 50 years, retiring in 2005.

“He was forced to retire at 80 only because he no longer could read because of macular degeneration,” said his wife of 43 years, Barbara DeGaetano.

“The time spent in family court was the closest to his heart,” she said, “especially in his role as law guardian. He was always on the side of children, trying to protect them. People would stop him on the street — grown up now — and thank him for something he did in court to ‘save them’ as children.”

She went on, “He was extremely involved in the lives of his children and grandchildren. He became a Little League coach so his older son would play baseball. He taught our daughter horseback riding because he loved horses. When she became proficient, he built her a barn and bought her a horse. When our youngest son went into bike racing, we traveled with him when he went to triathlons.”

Born and educated in Albany, Mr. DeGaetano was the son of the late John and Theresa (Viglucci) DeGaetano. He graduated from Christian Brothers Academy, Syracuse University, and Albany Law School.

He served in the United States Army during the Korean conflict as a psychiatric social worker at Fort Hood.

Mr. DeGaetano loved traveling, being with family and friends, and meeting people. A voracious reader with a love of history, he enjoyed good food and good wine. Mr. DeGaetano was a compassionate person who loved a good debate.

“He loved a good argument, in the philosophical sense — debating,” said his wife. She told a story that exemplified this.

“When his niece married, he had to check out the new nephew-in-law, who was half his age,” she said. “He kept him debating until three in the morning. He fell asleep right in front of Tony. He couldn’t take it any more.”


Anthony J. DeGaetano is survived by his wife of 43 years, Barbara (Sakrenz) DeGaetano; his children, Richard Marc DeGaetano and his wife, Wanda, of Toronto, Canada, Raoul H. DeGaetano of Saratoga, and Mia T. DeGaetano and Gerald Daguillo of East Berne; and his grandchildren, Harley, Dylan, and William.

He is also survived by his brother, Richard Joe DeGaetano, and his wife, Martha, of Gaithersburg, Md.; his niece and nephew, Michele Hall and her husband, Lamar, and their daughter, Emma, and Michael DeGaetano and his wife, Lisa, and their children, Jaymie and Luke.

He is survived, too, by his aunts, Isabel Carey and Marie Reith, and many cousins; his very close German family, especially Christa, Gerd, Heiko, Lutz, Kevin, and their families; and very special friends, Laura and Bob, Bill and Linda, and Mary and Tom.

Calling hours were held at the Daniel Keenan Funeral Home in Albany on Jan. 22 with a reception afterwards at the Italian-American Community Center. Condolences may be offered at danielKeenanfuneralhome.com.

— Melissa Hale-Spencer

[Return to Home Page]