76, of Monroeville, PA, passed away Wednesday, August 28, 2013, at Coffeyville Regional Medical Center in Coffeyville, KS. He was born October 1, 1936, in Pittsburgh, PA to Antonio and Jane (Hojnacki) Catone. John grew up and attended school in Swissvale and Rankin, PA where he graduated from high school. After high school, John attended and played basketball at Coffeyville Community College. He completed his education at Pittsburgh State University. On October 5, 1956, he married Jane Walterscheid at Holy Name Catholic Church in Coffeyville, KS. Following their marriage, they made their home in the Pittsburgh, PA area where John was a high school physical education teacher/coach for 31 years. He was a member of North American Martyrs Catholic Church in Monroeville, PA, Veterans of Foreign Wars, the former Dante Club of Rankin, PA and board member of East Boros Hall of Fame. John loved sports. During his high school days, John played football and basketball for the Rankin Jackrabbits. He was known to be a fast and powerful basketball player who had great hands and a great set-shot. The Rabbits compiled a 22 - 0 record and were section champs during his senior year. He was a star running back and punted for the football team that was also successful. John accepted one of many scholarship offers to play football at Coffeyville Junior College in Coffeyville, KS. Instead, he played basketball for the Coffeyville Junior College Red Ravens and became captain of the team, who was coached by, the late, great coach, Jack Hartman - who is a member of the NCAA Hall of Fame. John's best sport was baseball in which he played in the Sun-Telegraph All Star game at Forbes Field in Pittsburgh. He was offered a contract with the St. Louis Cardinals, but turned down the offer to continue his education. He always wanted to be a physical education teacher and coach. John did fulfill his dream and became a physical education teacher and coach at Westinghouse Memorial High School in Wilmerding, PA. He served in the US Army during the early 60s and remained in the Army and Air Force Reserves for a number of years. He coached football, basketball, volleyball and physical fitness and was an intramural adviser. He coached and initiated physical fitness in the Pittsburgh area. His team was tri-state champions in 1965, 1966 and 1967. In 1965 the team was National Champions and were guests of the US Marine Corps. During this time they toured Washington, DC and were honored by the Marines at a nearby stadium in which the Vice President of the United States was in attendance. Coach Catone and members of the team appeared on the national TV show "Nightlife" on May 1, 1965 and attended the World's Fair in New York. John also coached basketball for the St. Thomas Tomcats in Braddock, PA with Coach Clarence "Climey" Wargo. The team was back-to-back WPIAL Champions in 1976 and 1977. Here he had the honor of coaching his son, Jim. After retirement, John helped coach the eighth and ninth grade basketball team under Coach Jim Catone at East Allegheny School District. In 1995 John was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame - East Boros Chapter and served on the board as well. Coaching and family was his life. Survivors include his wife of 57 years, Jane "Dinger" Catone of the home; one son, Jim Catone and wife Carrie of North Huntingdon, PA; one daughter, Carol Oneslager and husband Chris of Wichita, KS; and four grandchildren, Maria Catone and Johnny Catone of North Huntingdon, PA, and Olivia Oneslager and Sophia Oneslager of Wichita, KS. Other survivors include sisters-in-law, many cousins, great-nieces and great-nephews as well as former students and players in which he coached. A Rosary Vigil Service was held on Friday, August 30, 2013 at Holy Name Catholic Church in Coffeyville, KS. Mass of Christian Burial was held on Saturday, August 31, 2013 at Holy Name Catholic Church with Father Ben Nguyen officiating. Burial was at Calvary Cemetery in Coffeyville, KS. Memorial service pending in the Pittsburgh area. If you would like to attend the memorial service, please send your email address to email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Published in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Sept. 6, 2013