Louis ‘Neni’ Gaetano, Sr. Derby High School Scholarship Fund
Established in 2011 as a scholarship fund by Derby Public Schools.
Glenn and his brother, Paul, Gaetano were both astonished and uplifted by the outpouring of their community after the loss of their father in 2011 and decided to do something that would make him proud. By establishing the Louis 'Neni' Gaetano, Sr. Derby High School Scholarship Fund, they are doing more than assisting with the cost of college education. Glenn and Paul feel they are also passing on the encouragement and support that they and their late brother, Louis, Jr., each received from their parents throughout their lives.
Glenn first became involved with VCF in 2006 when he and "Team DeFilippo" helped to establish the Lou and Dolly DeFilippo Scholarship Fund to honor the legacy of their former football coach and his wife. This experience and familiarity led Glenn and his brother to call on VCF's expertise once again.
"We didn't realize the number of people who were making contributions in our father's memory," Glenn said. "We were thinking of giving out a small scholarship each year but, then we learned we could endow the scholarship fund at VCF. We now can honor our father and mother in a way that lasts forever."
Neni was a permanent fixture in the Valley community, walking his mail route each day for 30 years, and making friends as he distributed letters. He was a lifelong Derby resident who was also a talented Derby High School athlete. It was at Derby High School where he met Margaret "Peggy" Baumer, who would become his wife of 64 years.
"The VCF office on Elizabeth St. is actually on our Dad's old route. Since Derby is so small, it has always been easy to get to know people. We were fortunate to grow up in Derby and my parents loved the city," Glenn added. Each year, scholarship recipients write the Gaetano Family letters of gratitude. "It's heartwarming to read these personal notes of thanks," Glenn said. "I like to write back and ask how things are going. On behalf of our father, I share our well wishes for success in school and in everything that they do. We are proud that, as a result of endowing this fund, it will be a permanent fixture at Derby High School, just as our dad was in this community throughout his entire life."
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