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Obituary: Tony J. Tuori

Tony J. Tuori

Tony J. Tuori, age 86, died Sept. 24, 2009 in Fort Wayne, IN. He was born in North Syracuse.

He was a captain in the U.S. Army serving as field artillery officer and battalion adjutant in the Phillipines during WWII.  He graduated from Ohio State University and received a master’s degree from Columbia Teacher’s College. He was a science teacher for 38 years, 33 years at Great Neck North Senior High School. As head of the science department he helped develop the science achievement tests, now SAT II subject tests and instituted the teaching of AP science courses. His passion in life was teaching science. In class he was known for his unique sense of humor and interesting chemistry demonstrations.

Many doctors, scientists and others notable in their fields were educated by him including Noble Prize winning retired president of Cal Tech Dr. David Baltimore, science and space writer Andrew Chaiken, X Prize founder Peter Diamandis, film producer Jon Avnet, vice chairman of Ellington Management Group Laurence Penn and particle physicist Gregory Penn.

He was proud of and modest about the success of his students and said “It wasn’t me, those kids in Great Neck were really terrific. They were interested in science and paid attention. I loved teaching, it wasn’t a job.” He recently sat in on his grandson Alex’s science class and commented “I feel like I am home again!”

Tony’s Catholic faith was very important to him. He was an active parishioner wherever he lived and participated in the Nocturnal Adoration Society in Great Neck. He enjoyed sports, including football, basketball, golf, and gardening. When he retired to Sarasota he participated in the Florida Senior Games in golf, walked the beach, played bridge and bingo.  His last four years were spent in Fort Wayne near his daughter. He commented that these were the best four years of his life since he was able to be close to his family.

Surviving are his devoted daughter Susan Tuori, MD; grandsons, Alexander and Robert; his sister Josephine and brother Michael. He was preceded in death by his wife Nancy; sisters, Madeline and Carmela Sandro; his brother Gaetano; and his parents John and Lucy.

A Memorial Mass was held Nov. 28 at St. Aloysius Church in Great Neck. Donations can be made to the National Science Teachers Association at Website