Carmen ‘Duke’ Deldeo Jr., accomplished educator

December 12, 2019

Carmen Joseph “Duke” Deldeo Jr., 72, of Dagsboro passed away peacefully Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2019, at the Delaware Hospice Center in Milford, with his wife, Betty Lou and daughter Cara by his side.  

Carmen was born in Wilmington, the son of the late Carmen and Carmela Deldeo.  In addition to his parents, he is predeceased by his sister, Mary Ann Brown.  Carmen is survived by his wife of 39 years, Betty Lou; a daughter, Cara M. Robinson and her husband Robbie; two grandsons and a granddaughter, Brayden, Cole and Allie.  

Carmen attended: Holy Rosary School, Salesianum School, University of Delaware, Villanova University and the Wilmington College Doctoral Program.

Carmen had many educational positions: college professor, administrative assistant to the superintendent, nutrition supervisor, high school and middle school principal, teacher and coach.  He taught business courses at Mainland Regional High School in New Jersey and William Penn High School in Delaware.  His girls track team was undefeated.  He was the assistant principal of Avon Grove High School in Pennsylvania.  He returned to Delaware and settled in Sussex County.  Carmen called it “God’s Country.”  

Carmen was a member of many professional and social organizations.  They included: Delaware Association of School Administrators, Delaware Association of Business Officials, Delaware School Nutrition Association from which he received the Outstanding Member Award, Lions Club, Lower Delaware Baseball/Softball Umpires Association and Lower Sussex Little League.  Carmen was the treasurer of the Delaware Association of School Administrators and the secretary of the Delaware Umpires Association.  

He retired from the Indian River School District after 35 years of service.  Carmen was a college, high school and Little League baseball/softball umpire for 27 years.  Carmen had many unusual jobs.  They included: auditor, bartender, chicken farmer, construction worker, doorman and factory worker.  He received an award for being the best Santa Claus for Strawbridge & Clothier.  He was a volunteer speaker for the American Cancer Society.  

Carmen and his extended family, Tom and Grace Milspaw and coach Eldred Cress enjoyed following his daughter Cara’s softball career from Little League to the state high school championship to ASA and St. Joseph’s Collegiate Competitions.  

Carmen was an avid hunter and fisherman. He and his cousin Doc Deldeo had many great hunting and fishing memories.  He especially enjoyed deer hunting with every weapon Delaware allowed.  

A visitation will be held from 10 to 11 a.m., Thursday, Dec. 19, at the Ocean View Chapel of Melson Funeral Services, 38040 Muddy Neck Road, Ocean View, where a memorial service to celebrate his life will begin at 11 a.m.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Delaware Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, 100 West 10th St., Wilmington, DE 19801 or consider honoring Carmen’s life by making a blood donation.  

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