Anthony "Tony" Michael DeLucas, age 84, passed away peacefully at his home in Pitman, NJ on December 5, 2020, surrounded by his loving family. Raised in Westville, Tony graduated from Woodbury High School in 1954 and University of Delaware in 1958. He received a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and later earned his Master's Degree in Education from Rutgers University. Tony received the Parker McKee Scholar Athlete Award his Senior year of high school having starred in football, basketball, and baseball. He received honors for All Colonial Conference QB, All South Jersey Group III QB, All Colonial Conference pitcher and was named 1st Team on the All State team for baseball. Tony served as Vice President his Sophomore year and Class President his Freshman, Junior and Senior years.
Tony received a four year football scholarship to the University of Delaware Blue Hens where he excelled in football and baseball from 1954-58 under famed coach, Harold "Tubby" Raymond. Tony taught History at Sterling High School beginning in 1961 and began his coaching career there until 1966. His 6 foot ½ inch (something he always addressed with those who said he was 6 foot) "tall, dark and handsome" stature led to his heartthrob appeal within the female population at Sterling, but he captured the heart of a fellow teacher named Miss Carol Bramante. They went on 3 dates in 10 months and married in 1968. The rest is history!
Tony moved to Washington Township High School in 1967 and taught Driver's Education to thousands of students. "10 and 2" and "A,B,C, Dog" will forever be Tony's claim to fame. He was the head football coach for 17 years accumulating a 83-66-5 record, including an undefeated 9-0 season in 1970 as well as a pair of Olympic Conference Championships. He was named the Courier Post Coach of the Week three times and Coach of the Year by the Woodbury Daily Times, the South Jersey Midget League and the Touchdown Club of South Jersey. Tony was a member of the Woodbury HS Sports Hall of Fame, the Gloucester County Sports Hall of Fame, the South Jersey Coaches Association Hall of Fame and the Hot Stovers Baseball Club of South Jersey. In October 2019, he was inducted into the inaugural class of the WTHS Coaches Wall of Fame. Tony also loved umpiring baseball and softball at the high school and college levels for 25 years.
Tony took a hiatus from coaching in 1983, so he could spend more time with his daughters and be involved with their school and extracurricular activities. Seven years later, he took great delight when John Bunting asked him to coach the running backs at Rowan University. They advanced to the Division III Stagg Bowl Championship two times while under Bunting and KC Keeler from 1990-95. Tony then retired in 1997 after 36 years in education.
Six months after retirement, he was thrilled to be given the opportunity to coach the freshmen football team at WTHS from 1997-2003 and ended with a record of 60-1-2. He volunteered as a docent on the Battleship New Jersey and served as a tour guide at Citizens Bank Park, a job he thoroughly enjoyed for 16 years. He was a baseball trivia master which made his tours even more personal and unique. Tony also worked part time as a driver at Kelley Funeral Home. He volunteered as a coach to the girls Pitman Softball team and coached with the Pitman Little League as his two grandsons moved through the program.
Tony was involved in the Woodbury High School Sports Alumni Association serving as its leader for several years and was a member of the Woodbury and WTHS Hall of Fame committees. He was also a longtime member of the Gloucester County Sports Hall of Fame where he emceed the banquets for over 20 years.
Tony was a faithful and active member of Kemble Memorial United Methodist Church in Woodbury for 50 years. He was head usher for 20 years, a member of the Men's Discipleship Group, a server for the Kemble Community luncheons, and he sang in the choir. Tony loved the Lord and walked the Christian walk every day of his life.
The absolute delights in Tony's life were his six cherished grandchildren. He doted over them every chance he got. His later years were spent watching all of them participate in their sports and activities. It was what gave him his greatest joy. He was so proud of each one, which was evident when he spoke of them. Without a doubt, "Grandpop" was his favorite title.
Survived by his beloved wife of 52 wonderful years, Carol (nee Bramante), two loving daughters, Tammy (Michael) Razze of Pitman and Kim (Tony) DeCant of Mantua; six adored grandchildren, Nicholas, Anthony, Carly and Lucas Razze, Justin and Hadden DeCant; sister Phyllis (George) Neuhart of FL, brother James (Doris) of VA; Tony is also survived by Carol's loving sisters and brothers, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law and many admiring nieces and nephews. Predeceased by his parents, Anthony and Carrie (nee Field) who owned DeLucas Tailor Shop in Westville.
Tony's family continues to be overwhelmed with the outpouring of love that has been shown to them. Tony was an exceptional human being who made a huge impact on so many people's lives. He was humble and a gentle soul who served as an outstanding role model for those he taught and coached. He always had a smile on his face and never uttered a negative word about anyone. His greatest characteristic was that of a sportsman, which he exemplified both on and off the field. Tony was a class act and one of a kind. His former minister echoed the sentiments expressed by so many when he wrote: "Tony was a great man. A man unlike many men. He was full of humility, giftedness and grace." What a beautiful legacy Tony has left behind for all who knew him to carry on.
Friends may pay their respects on Friday, December 11th from 4-8 pm and on Saturday, December 12th from 10-1pm at Kemble Methodist Church, 19 South Broad Street, Woodbury, NJ. Funeral service and burial will be private immediately following the viewing.
**The family understands that not everyone is comfortable coming to the church because of the present COVID situation. To ensure everyone's safety and maintaining respect for all, everyone must wear a mask and there will be no physical contact with anyone. Visitors are asked to please enter through side door of church where they will be directed. All in attendance, including the family, will be socially distanced so that the family can still greet everyone who loved Tony.
A Celebration of Life will take place on Sunday, April 18, 2021 to honor this extraordinary man. We hope that you will save the date and join us for a time to remember a life well-lived.
We respectfully request that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to a scholarship established by the family in Tony's memory, which will be presented to a graduating WTHS student athlete each year. Please make checks payable to: Tony DeLucas Memorial Scholarship Fund and send to: TDMSF c/o Tammy Razze 510 N. Broadway, Pitman, NJ 08071