Share This Page

North Side native inspired by notable neighbors

| Monday, Nov. 26, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
Donald W. “Red” Livingstone, 77, of Mt. Washington, died at home on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, 2012.

You can take the boy out of the North Side, but you can't take the North Side out of the boy, Joanne Livingstone soon learned after her marriage to Red Livingstone.

Although the Livingstones moved to Mt. Washington after their marriage 50 years ago, Mr. Livingstone relished his memories of the growing up in the 1940s and '50s in the close-knit Pittsburgh neighborhood known as “The Ward.”

Donald W. “Red” Livingstone, 77, of Mt. Washington, died at home on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, 2012.

“The North Side was an enormous part of his life,” Joanne Livingstone said. She said her husband recounted stories of growing up around Art Rooney Sr. and babysitting future CIA director Michael Hayden, who lived next door.

“He had a football that was Michael Hayden's. He has an autographed picture from (Hayden) that is signed ‘I still want my football back.' He would joke that he had stolen a football from the director of the CIA,” Mrs. Livingstone said.

Her husband often told of Steelers' founder Art Rooney Sr. gathering boys from the neighborhood into his 1948 Buick station wagon and taking them out to play football or attend games. For Red Livingstone, it was the start of a lifelong love affair with the sport.

Mr. Livingstone played for, helped organize and coached various North Side sandlot and semi-pro football teams, becoming an assistant coach for the championship semi-pro North Side Express in the 1980s.

His daughter, Gail Livingstone, said the Rooneys were longtime supporters of her father's various football enterprises and donated equipment and supplies to them over the years.

“He always said he couldn't have done it without the Rooneys,” she said.

More recently, Mr. Livingstone displayed memorabilia from those teams at the annual North Side Old Timers picnic, said Fred Zangaro. Zangaro said those events highlight the community pride that once reigned supreme in the neighborhood that had “a sandlot team on every corner.”

Mr. Livingstone was an Army veteran and a Teamster. During a long career, he drove for many carriers. Mrs. Livingstone said her husband also drove for a string of notables when they visited Pittsburgh, including former vice president Al Gore, and Robert DeNiro and Meryl Streep when they were here to make the 1978 film “The Deer Hunter.”

Mr. Livingstone was a Democratic Committee member and judge of elections for many years.

In addition to his wife and daughter, survivors include two sons, Donald B. and Michael T. Livingstone, and two grandchildren.

Visitation will be from 2 to 8 p.m. Monday in Brusco-Falvo Funeral Home, 214 Virginia Ave., Mt. Washington. Funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday in St. Mary of the Mount Church, followed by military honors by VFW Post 5111.

Debra Erdley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-320-7996 or derdley@tribweb.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.