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Michael J. Vendetti; 82

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Michael J. Vendetti; 82 Obituary
Michael J. Vendetti; 82

DUDLEY -- Michael J. Vendetti, 82, formerly of Jaybee Avenue, died Thursday, March 20, 2014 in Overlook Masonic Health Care, Charlton, after a period of declining health.

His wife of 54 years, Joan F. (Edgerly) Vendetti, died in 2011. He leaves three sons, Michael J. Vendetti, Jr. and his wife, Kelly of Fairhaven, NJ, Mark J. Vendetti and his wife, Theresa of Columbus, OH, and Paul A. Vendetti and his wife, Catherine of Bloomington, IL; seven grandchildren, Paul, Alexandra, Regina, Isabella, twins, Michelle and Steven, and Tyler; a brother-in-law, John Corbett of Leominster; a nephew, Larry Corbett and his wife, Robin and their son, Max of Lunenburg. He was preceded in death by his two sisters.

He was born in Leominster, the son of Domenic and Maria Vendetti. He graduated from Leominster High School in 1950 and earned his Bachelor of Science in Public Relations from Boston University in 1954. He then was awarded a Master of Education Degree from Worcester State College in 1960 and also did graduate work in athletic administration at Northeast University and at Boston Bouve College. He moved to Dudley in 1962 and had lived in Charlton since 2012.

Mr. Vendetti started his extensive career in education as a mathematics teacher at Memorial School in Ashburnham. He was an Associate Professor and Director of Physical Education at Nichols College in Dudley from 1962 to 1975. He was the Director of Athletics at Nichols College from 1975 to 1986, when he retired. He then taught physical education at Park Avenue Elementary School in Webster starting in 1987 for a number of years.

As a football coach, he was an assistant at Leominster High School, line coach and counselor for football players at Boston University, and assistant coach and recruiter at the University of Vermont from 1959 to 1962, where he initiated the study hall and tutoring system for athletes. From 1962 to 1986, he was the head football coach, head track coach and director of intramurals at Nichols College. His teams won five New England Football Conference titles over a six year span in the 70's. He was named head tennis coach for the 1983-1984 seasons. He also was the weight (track) coach at WPI from 1987 to 1989. While at Nichols College and after his retirement, he served on many committees, especially those involving alumni.

He belonged to many professional organizations, including the American Football Coaches Association, the New England Football Coaches Association, the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame, Inc., the U.S. Track & Field Federation of Accredited Officials, and the New England Track Coaches Association. He was a charter member and vice president of the Central Mass. Chapter of the National Foundation and Hall of Fame, Inc. He served in several capacities on the ECAC Division III selection committee. From 1979-1982 he was a member of the Kodak All American Football Coaches Association Selection Committee. He was also a member of the Southern Worcester County Vocational High School Committee from 1973 to 1976.

Mr. Vendetti was the recipient of several awards. The Nichols College Ledger was dedicated to him in 1969. He was New England Football Conference Coach of the year in 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976 and 1978. He was awarded the Honorary Alumnus Award of Nichols College in 1982. He received the "N Club" Recognition Award for the 1982-1983 School Year. He was recognized by the Central Mass. Chapter of the National Football Foundation and Hall of Fame, Inc. with the Distinguished Service to Football Award. His induction into the Nichols College Athletic Hall of Fame for his accomplishments as football coach and athletic director occurred in 1996. In 2005, Nichols College renamed their multi-purpose athletic stadium in his honor to Michael J. Vendetti Field. In 2011, he was inducted into the Leominster High School Hall of Fame.

The funeral will be held Saturday, March 29, from Scanlon Funeral Service, 38 East Main Street, Webster, with a Mass at 10:30 AM in Saint Anthony of Padua Church, 24 Dudley Hill Road. Burial will be in St. Anthony's Cemetery, Webster. The family will receive relatives and friends from 5:00 to 8:00 Friday, March 28 and again from 8:30 to 9:30 Saturday, March 29, in the funeral home. Donations in his name may be made to the Michael J. and Joan F. Vendetti Scholarship, c/o College Advancement, Nichols College, PO Box 5000, Dudley, MA 01571. www.scanlonfs.net
Published in Sentinel & Enterprise on Mar. 23, 2014
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