Eugene Leone

LEONE, EUGENE Eugene Leone, the first principal of DePaolo Jr. High School in Southington, CT, died April 16, 2014, at Masonicare of Wallingford, CT. He was the beloved husband of Anne H. Leone. After having served his country as a member of the USMC in WWII and the Korean Conflict, he graduated from SCSU and earned graduate degrees at Fairfield University. Teaching elementary grades in Meriden and North Haven provided an excellent foundation for a junior high teaching position in North Haven and his subsequent role of Vice-Principal at JFK Jr. High in Southington. His experience in construction, painting and as an iron-worker served him well during the construction phase of DePaolo. During this period he also served as the Vice-Principal of JFK and acting principal of Lincoln-Lewis. When construction of DePaolo was completed, he was appointed as the school’s first principal, a position he held for the next twenty years. Always the epitome of the expression “once a marine, always a marine,” Gene was proud of his excellent faculty and the esprit de corps which was so evident in his well-run school. His expertise and innovative scheduling abilities were much appreciated by the capable faculty as they developed new ideas. During this time Gene was also an adjunct professor at the University of Bridgeport and assisted in UB’s study abroad programs in England over a period of years. Always eager to learn, he traveled and studied extensively in Great Britain and Italy. A talented athlete himself, he encouraged participation in sports by his children and grandchildren and could often be found cheering them on at swim meets, football and baseball games and regattas. In later years the NY Giants, NY Yankees and UCONN basketball teams got his full attention and often his constructive criticism. Fishing, kayaking, clamming and boating with his friends and family were favorite activities while at his Cape Cod house. Annual family vacations at Lake George were spent swimming, sailing and hanging out with close friends: the Esposito and Gentile families. The son of the late Henry E. Leone and Anna R. Leone, he was also predeceased by his beloved daughter, Jean Ann Leone Sjovall; his brother, M/Sgt. Henry Leone; and sister Elvira Turney. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, Anne Hollingsworth-Leone; by his children and their spouses: Mark and Joan Leone of Oxford, Janet Leone-Franchi and Dante Franchi of Hamden, Jonathan Leone of Wallingford and his longtime friend Denise Benson of Hamden. His grandchildren include: Justin and Stephanie Leone of Oxford, Lucas Franchi of Hamden, Matthew Sjovall of Littleton, CO, and Sarah Sjovall of Nathalie, VA. He is also survived by a sister, Sharon DeWerdt; his sister-in-law, Ann M. Leone; a nephew, Eugene A. Leone; and many nieces and nephews. Given his great love of music and learning, it is suggested that contributions to one of his following charities would be appropriate if so desired: The Class of 1951 Endowed Scholarship Fund at the SCSU Foundation, 501 Crescent St. New Haven, CT 06515 (class of 1951 in memo section) or the Music Scholars Fund at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 65 North Main St., Wallingford, CT 06492. A memorial service with military honors will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, located at 65 North Main Street in Wallingford, on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 10:00 AM. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. There are no calling hours. The B.C. Bailey Funeral Home of Wallingford has been entrusted with the arrangements. To leave a message of remembrance or for directions, please visit

Funeral Home

B.C. Bailey Funeral Home
273 South Elm Street Wallingford, CT 06492
(203) 269-4630
Published in The New Haven Register on May 1, 2014