Donald E. DeMaria obituary photo
 
In Memory of

Donald E. DeMaria

January 6, 1934 - August 6, 2017

Obituary


Donald Emanuel DeMaria was born in Brooklyn, New York on January 6, 1934 and died in Athens, Georgia on August 6, 2017. While he only was five feet, six inches tall, he was a giant to all who knew him. Each day, his infectious smile, big belly laugh and kind words and actions brightened the lives of so many.

After growing up in Brooklyn and Holyoke, Massachusetts, he graduated from Samuel J. Tilden High School in Brooklyn and served two tours in Korea on the U.S.S. Oriskany. Donald returned to New York...

Donald Emanuel DeMaria was born in Brooklyn, New York on January 6, 1934 and died in Athens, Georgia on August 6, 2017. While he only was five feet, six inches tall, he was a giant to all who knew him. Each day, his infectious smile, big belly laugh and kind words and actions brightened the lives of so many.

After growing up in Brooklyn and Holyoke, Massachusetts, he graduated from Samuel J. Tilden High School in Brooklyn and served two tours in Korea on the U.S.S. Oriskany. Donald returned to New York and started a career working in retail department stores. He retired as a purchasing agent in Nassau County, New York in 1999. Upon retirement, he and his twin brother moved to Naples, Florida, relocating to Athens, Georgia in 2011.

It was during his work with Gimbels Department Store that he met the love of his life Marjorie. He loved her beyond measure and treasured their four children, nine grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. He taught all who love him that one's worth is not in the amount of their salary or their job title; it is found within the kindness they show to one another and the impact they make in others' lives. He valued hard work but even after a long day would find the time to have a catch, play cards or simply spend quality time with his family and friends. He enjoyed chatting on the phone about his latest batch of chicken soup or simply would call just to hear your voice.

Since moving to Athens, he volunteered at Timothy Road and Winterville Elementary schools and took every opportunity to help principals, office staff, teachers and most importantly students. While he loved making task lists and found great satisfaction in completing them, he had no greater joy than delivering bags of food to needy students at the end of each week. He cared about all of the students and many who had the joy of knowing him simply called him "Mr. D." He was a pillar of the Timothy Road Elementary School community and in 2016, the Clarke County School District recognized him as the Volunteer of the Year.

Donald is preceded in death by his wife Marjorie, his parents Dominick and Tessie DeMaria and his sister JoAnn DeMaria. He is survived by his daughters Rita (Dan) Fisher, Nancy (Danny) DeMaria Fulks; sons Donald (Melinda) DeMaria, Paul DeMaria; brothers Richard DeMaria, Robert DeMaria; nine grandchildren; and one great-granddaughter.

A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held on Saturday, August 12, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at Timothy Road Elementary School (1900 Timothy Road, Athens, GA 30606).

In lieu of flowers, please direct memorials to the Foundation for Excellence in Public Education, PO Box 1708, Athens, GA 30603-1708 (http://athensffe.org). You also can honor his memory by volunteering in your community. It never is too late to make a difference in the life of another person.

Online condolences may be offered at www.BernsteinFuneralHome.com.

Bernstein Funeral Home and Cremation Service is in charge of arrangements.