Joseph A. DiBello

September 21, 1942 ~ June 1, 2021 (age 78)


The fourth quarter clicked to a finalizing stop.  “It’s over.  Good game,” said Coach, as He embraced Di Bello at the sideline: “Follow me, son.”   On Tuesday, June 1, 2021, Joseph A. Di Bello of Maybrook, NY; formerly Montgomery and Middletown, was summoned to join his mates on the Final Gridiron.  A graduate of Middletown High School, Di Bello’s athletic prowess, {football, baseball (PBA) and track and field}, was surpassed only by his academic fondness for De Bello Gallico.

Di Bello’s gridiron pursuits continued at the University of Dayton and Alfred University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts Degree, prior to completing a MA + 30 program at Fordham University. He was a Valley Central High School principal for twenty-seven consecutive years. Where he initially taught English, Drama and coached football.  Additionally, he was a working participant in owning and managing Riverview Acres Organic Produce Farm and, as a member NYC’s Greenmarkets, quickly became noted as a sought-after vendor in the West Village. He was the sole proprietor of Rusty Spur Saloon and was an avid bowler.

Known as a strict disciplinarian with a big heart, Di Bello’s, finest years were at the helm of the Valley Central Vikings. There, joining innovation with creativity, he created an environment conducive to teaching, learning and personal dignity.  Not timid with dispensing credit, Di Bello was known as quick to praise and shield his professional teachers, custodial, clerical, cafeteria and grounds staff.  And not one to neglect the students of Valley Central, he often boasted of their position as the best in Orange County: bright, respectful and competitive.  To be fair, and with respect to expectations, Di Bello was quick to let “VC’s Best” know, up-close and personal, when they fell short of expected measures.  In those days, the school building on Route 17K in Montgomery was affectionately known as “Happy Valley High School.”

After leaving his position at the high school, Di Bello was the owner, operator of Di Bello Frame Shop and Art Gallery in the Village of Montgomery.  Additionally, he especially relished his work as published columnist, concentrating on theatre arts, theatre reviews and live theater in the Hudson Valley.  His work appeared in The Canvas. 

Di Bello was an active columnist during post VC years.  The appeal of live theatre never left his side, as he reviewed and published live Hudson Valley theatre in print and in an on-line publication, “Meet Me in the Greenroom.” His column appeared in print in issues of the Canvas on a regular basis in, The Delaware Valley Meet “Me in the Greenroom.”

Di Bello is survived by partner- Joy La Riviere of Maybrook, NY. children: Laura DiBello and her children Elisa Pisana-Gjeka and husband Tonin and Sophia Pisana of Boca Raton, Fla. Lisa DiBello and her partner Jay Saber of Santa Cruz,Ca. Scott Lare, his wife Molsey and their children Jayen and Kayla Lare of Carey, NC. Laurie-Kay Hoeffner and her husband Thomas and daughter Sarah of Montgomery. Their son Daniel Hoeffner and fiance' Mary Cate Maguire of Maybrook. sisters Tina Budd and her husband Vincent of Greentown, PA. Maria Eisenberg and her husband Michael of Vienna,Va.

He was predeceased by his parents, Anthony and Dorothy Di Bello, his brother Andrew John and his wife of 42 years, Janet Zickler Di Bello.

A Celebration of Life will take place Saturday, June 12, 2021, at 11am at the Montgomery Senior Center, 36 Bridge St., Montgomery, NY 12549. It will be livestreamed via Zoom, 

Topic: Joseph DiBello Celebration of Life
Time: Jun 12, 2021 11:00 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Meeting ID: 337 560 0326
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In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Town of Montgomery Volunteer Ambulance Corp, who went above and beyond to help Joe, PO Box 25, Walden, NY 12586 or a charity of one’s choice. 




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Celebration of Life
June 12, 2021

11:00 AM
Montgomery Senior Center
36 Bridge St.
Montgomery, New York 12549


Town of Montgomery Volunteer Ambulance Corps
PO Box 25, Walden, NY 12586, AB

Charity of One's Choice

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