Published in Las Vegas Review-Journal from October 4 to
October 5, 2011
born Sept. 2, 1933, passed away peacefully at his home Oct. 1, 2011, surrounded
by his family.
A 20-year resident of Las Vegas, Tom was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., the eldest
of seven children of Mike and Jean (Zammetti) DeLuca. In 1960, he married
Julie Fitzgerald and they had five children.
He is survived by his wife, Julie; children, Patricia Killarney, Andrew
DeLuca and Joseph DeLuca; grandchildren, Derrick, Andrew, Jillian, Shane,
Katherine and Danny; and siblings, John DeLuca, Angel Caruolo, Teresa
Fox and Donna DiGiacomo.
He was preceded in death by his son, Tommy; daughter, Dani; brother, Mike
DeLuca; and sister, Stephanie Simonetti. Tom was a gifted athlete, starting
his career at Long Beach High School and continuing on to NYU playing
both baseball and basketball.
After serving in the U.S. Army during the Korean War, he returned to NYU
to receive his teaching degree. He was drafted into the St. Louis Cardinals
organization as a shortstop in 1957.
Tom left the Cardinals organization to return home to his first love -
teaching. He began his teaching career in Bellmore, N.Y., before moving
on to his long time position at his alma mater, Long Beach High School
During his 20-year tenure he was varsity baseball, basketball and football
head coach. Mr. "D" took his 1984 basketball team to the New
York State finals. More important than the titles he won, were the number
of lives he changed.
Upon retirement Tom and Julie moved to Las Vegas and opened Toys Of Yesteryear
where he was known as "The Toy Man." Memorial Services were