Philip Christie DePaul, 92, formerly of Staten Island, New York and Palm Coast, Florida died on Tuesday, July 1, 2014 in Madison, Wisconsin. Phil was born on February 19, 1922 to Christie and Carolina DePaola in Manhattan. In 1930 the family moved to Staten Island. He attended P.S. 17 in Staten Island and upon high school graduation won a scholarship Physics. However, to support his family, he continued working and attended evening classes at the City College of New York, majoring in engineering. Phil joined the U.S. Navy in 1943 and served in the Pacific theater aboard the U.S.S. Chara (AKA-58), and actively participated in troop landings under fire in several major Pacific battles. Phil described his Navy battle experiences including Kamikaze attacks and the enormous U.S. Naval fleet at the battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest naval battle in World War II. He also soberly recounted, "I saw a lot of men die." On November 17, 1946, Phil wedded the love of his life, Edith Leggiadro, a marriage blessed with three children. After the war, Phil embarked on a successful career as a engineer and manager. He retired in 1983 as the engineering manager at Pennwalt Corporation and in 1985 he and Edith moved to a new house in Palm Coast, Florida. Phil's was active in a number of organizations, including the Free Masons, the Shrine, as an elder and lector in the Staten Island Moravian Church and as President of the Palm Coast, Florida Italian-American Club. In 1987, Phil joined the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary (Flotilla 14-3, District 7), and was appointed as a Flotilla Staff Officer for Materials. In 1989 became the Flotilla Operations Officer, a position he held for 16 years. In 1995 he became the Flotilla Officer for Publications, editing the Flotilla newsletter until 2007, when he retired from active Coast Guard Auxiliary service. Philip was predeceased by loving wife Edith in 2011. He is survived by son Chris (Pat) of Palm Coast, Florida, daughter Roxanne (James) of Madison, Wisconsin and son Rodney (Donna) of Staten Island, New York, brother Dominic (Hazel) of Palm Coast, Florida, sister Gloria Scaglione of Staten Island and six grand children. Cremation will be followed by entombment at Craig Flagler Cemetery in Flagler Beach. A ceremonial burial at sea with full honors will be conducted by the Coast Guard Auxiliary.
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Published in Daytona Beach News-Journal on July 13, 2014