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Victor Della-Giustina

AUGUSTA, Ga. - Entered into rest on Saturday, March 09, 2013, Dr. Victor Emillo Della- Giustina, 94, husband of Mrs. Ellen Della- Giustina. Dr. Della- Giustina was born in Springfield, Mass. to Augusto and Catherine Bianchi Della-Giustina. He attended Classical High School in Springfield, where he first developed a lifelong passion for Opera. After graduation he honorably served his country in the United States Army; fighting in World War II and earning five Battle Stars and the Bronze Star while serving under General Patton. While overseas, he met and married the love of his life and wife of 67 years, Ellen Fullerton of Glasgow, Scotland. After returning to the United States, Dr. Della-Giustina earned a Bachelor's Degree with honors from Springfield College, a Doctor of Dental Surgery from Loyola University - New Orleans, and a Masters in Public Health from Tulane University. He also studied economics at Glasgow University. Dr. Della-Giustina came to Augusta in 1957 to work as the Dental Health Director for the city, which allowed him to further his commitment to public service in a place that he always considered home. He was responsible for having fluoride added to Augusta's drinking water. He traveled to New Zealand with the World Health Organization to teach oral hygiene and he was instrumental in implementing the regulations that require high school and college football players to wear protective mouthpieces. Dr. Della-Giustina was a co-founder of the School of Dentistry at the Medical College of Georgia, where he also taught. His pride in the school and its students earned him the affectionate and enduring nickname of Dr. Della. Later as a silver-haired legislator elected by the senior citizens of Augusta, Dr. Della-Giustina pioneered the law that required all dentures to be identified. He volunteered for years at the Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home, where the program Dentists for Della, which provides monthly dental cleaning to resident veterans, was created in his honor. Dr. Della-Giustina was a faithful parishioner at St. Mary on the Hill Catholic Church, where he served as a Eucharistic Minister. Dr. Della-Giustina is survived by his wife, Mrs. Ellen Della-Giustina, as well as his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren: Catherine Della-Giustina of Augusta, Georgia, and her son Peter Jason; Sandra (Gary) Forrest of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and their children Sarah (Rob and children Della and Morgan) and Allison (Josh); Vicky (Daniel) Sullivan of Kiawah Island, South Carolina, and their children Daniel (Joanne) and Conor; and Victor (Kelly) Guistina of Atlanta, Georgia and their children William and Ashlyn. All of the family members would like to share with Ms. Essie Mackie their appreciation for her five years of devoted care of their beloved husband, father, and grandfather. They also would like to thank the staff of the 5th floor of the Georgia War Veterans Home for taking such good care of him and all the doctors who have assisted in his care over the last several months, A funeral mass will be celebrated at St. Mary on the Hill Catholic Church on Tuesday, March 12, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. with Fr. Gerald Ragan celebrant. A private burial service with military honors will follow at Westover Memorial Park. The family will receive friends following the burial at the Bistro 491 in Surrey Center. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Dentists for Della c/o Georgia Regents University Office of Advancement, 1120 15th Street, FI-1000, Augusta, GA 30912 or St. Jude's Hospital: 262 Danny Thomas Pl Memphis, TN 38105 Thomas Poteet & Son Funeral Directors, 214 Davis Rd., Augusta, GA 30907 (706) 364-8484. Please sign the guestbook at www.thomaspoteet.com

Published in The Augusta Chronicle from Mar. 10 to Mar. 11, 2013
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