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Coach had passion for family, sports, Dean Martin

| Friday, Sept. 6, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Michael 'Vince' Capozzi, 76, of Greensburg, died Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013, in Westmoreland Manor, after a battle with cancer.

Michael “Vince” Capozzi was a man of his word, even in the final hours of his life, his family remembered on Thursday.

He was there on Sunday to celebrate his 51st wedding anniversary with his wife, Virginia, despite the cancer that ravaged his body.

“He promised her he would make it to that day, and that was the last day he was conscious,” said his son, Vince Capozzi of North Union. “He willed himself, for her, to make that goal.”

Mr. Capozzi of Greensburg died two days later, on Tuesday, Sept. 3, 2013, in Westmoreland Manor. He was 76.

For 28 years, he held various positions with Charley Brothers and SuperValu and retired as manager of warehouse facilities in 1997.

He had a lifelong passion for sports and coached various baseball and basketball teams.

Vince Capozzi and his brother, Jerry Capozzi, of Dayton, Ohio, said their father showed them how to be responsible adults, both as a father and a coach.

“It wasn't about the sports,” Jerry Capozzi said. “It was more about the camaraderie and a family event. We were together. That was the important thing.”

“He loved his family. That's the biggest thing he demonstrated throughout his life, not only talking about it but showing it,” added Vince Capozzi, athletic director at Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus.

Mr. Capozzi loved everything Italian, and Dean Martin in particular, his sons said.

“He would hammer on the piano keys and sing Dean Martin songs,” Jerry Capozzi said. “He was off-key ... but we loved to hear it.”

Mr. Capozzi and his wife attended the Dean Martin conventions held in the crooner's hometown of Steubenville, Ohio, for several years in a row, Jerry Capozzi said.

Mr. Capozzi is survived by his wife, Virginia (Dorko), and his sons, Vince and wife, Ann, of Lemont Furnace, and Jerry and wife, Julie, of Dayton, Ohio. He is survived by grandchildren, Dean, Andrew and Jaret, of Dayton, Ohio, and Catie, of Lemont Furnace.

He is survived by several brothers and sisters.

Prayers will be offered at 9:30 a.m. on Friday in Leo M. Bacha Funeral Home at Stanton and Green streets, Greensburg. A funeral Mass will follow at 10 a.m. in Our Lady of Grace Church, Greensburg.

Entombment will be in Greensburg Catholic Cemetery.

Bob Stiles is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-836-6622 or bstiles@tribweb.com.

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