Anthony G. "Tony" Berto, 93
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Anthony G. "Tony" Berto, 93, of Delphi, died at 5:40pm Thurs.-Aug. 21, 2014, at St. Elizabeth Healthcare Center-Delphi. He was born May 4, 1921 in Clinton, IN, to the late Julious & Mary Magnabosco Berto. His marriage was to Marilyn Parsons in Otsego, MI, on Jan. 24, 1948, and she survives. He was a 1939 graduate of Clinton High School, where he was a star athlete in 3 sports. He attended Purdue University from 1940-1943, a scholarship athlete, halfback on their football team, and played some basketball & baseball for the Boilermakers, receiving his BS in Physical Education, and later his masters degree in the same. He was in the U.S. Navy, Columbia University Mid Ship School, graduated commanding officer & executive officer, 1942-1946. Returned to civilian life as a Lieutenant.
He taught at Otsego High School from 1946-1948 and coached; Boonville High School 1948-1952 and coached; Delphi Community High School 1952-1985, where he taught Health & Physical Education, and was Delphi's head football coach, and coached other sports at different times, basketball, baseball, and golf. Tony followed in the footsteps of his late uncle John "Maggie" Magnabosco, who was quite a big name in Indiana Football circles.
At his death, he was the varsity coach for the Ball State University football team. Tony coached and taught health and PE at Delphi Community High School for over 3 decades, and is recognized as one of the winningest coaches in the history of the state. He was the head football coach from 1952-1985. He also coached basketball & baseball at different times, and started the first ever girls & boys golf programs at DCHS.
He was elected President of the Indiana Football Coaches Assoc., in 1979. He was inducted into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame. He was named Sagamore of the Wabash, by Gov. Evan Bayh, and it was presented by former State Senator Katie Wolf. At that time, he is thought to be only the second coach to become a Sagamore; the first was the legendary John Wooden of Purdue & UCLA fame. He was named the Indiana High School Athletic Association Coach of the year in 1980. Selected to the coaching staff of the Indiana North/South All Star teams, twice. Tony was a nominee for the National High School Football Coach of the year in recognition of his overall coaching record, professional honors, and contributions to the sport. Tony was also presented the Citation of Merit by Purdue University, for professional dedication & outstanding service in the field of education. Tony and his football players, enjoyed one of the longest winning streaks in the States history. A record 33-0 during 1964-1967 seasons, and 3 undefeated years: 1964, 65, 66. Tony and his teams won many Hoosier Conference Championship titles as well in the 70's & 1980. he and his team won 19 consecutive games, and had an undefeated season during that time. He was extremely proud of his many athletes who went on the play football at various colleges & university's across the country on football scholarships. September 9, 1995 the DCHS football field was named Berto Field in his honor. During his summers off from teaching, Tony ran the summer rec program in Delphi, for many years.
He was a very humble man, and a true gentleman. He absolutely loved the City of Delphi, all of his students, players, and fellow educators. He often said he attributed much of the successes & honors bestowed upon him to them, and his loving wife Marilyn of 66 years, his daughters, and his strong faith in the good Lord. He was a great teacher, coach, friend, and will be dearly missed by all who knew him. He dearly loved his wife, daughters, grand & great grandchildren, they were his life.
He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church-Delphi, Purdue University Alumni Assoc., Phi Kappa Theta fraternity at Purdue, life member of the Delphi Lions Club, Elks Club, Delphi American Legion Post #75, and the Carroll County Country Club.
Surviving: wife Marilyn Berto of Delphi; daughters: Michele Dorsey of San Jose, CA; Kim & Pat Wright of Indianapolis; Cherie & Brad Brummett of Lafayette; Terrie Berto of Atlanta, GA; grandchildren: Grant & Renee Dorsey, Jamie & Scott Spitznagle, Chase Brummett, Kara Wright, Amanda Wright; great grandchildren: Trevon Brummett, Avery Spitznagle, Pierce Dorsey. Preceded in death by 2 brothers David & James. Services: friends may call Fri.-Aug. 29 from 10am until a sharing time at 2pm at Abbott Funeral Home-Delphi. Funeral mass Monday-Sept. 1 at 10am at St, Joseph Catholic Church-Delphi, Father Robert Williams officiating. Burial at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery-Delphi, with Carroll County Honor Guard providing military graveside rites. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions to the DCHS athletic dept., or Almost Home & Humane Societies, or your favorite pet rescue place. Online condolences: firstname.lastname@example.org
Abbott Funeral Home - Delphi
421 E Main Street Delphi, IN 46923
Published in the Journal & Courier from Aug. 23 to Aug. 24, 2014