Oct 07, 2012 | 2204 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A funeral service took place Oct. 2 at the Thiells United Methodist Church, Thiells, N.Y., for Dr. Anthony DaCosta Mello, 73, of Tuxedo Park, N.Y., father of Hoboken City Councilman David Mello. He passed away on Sept. 26. Tony was a former assistant superintendent of instruction with the North Rockland Central School District, and longtime employee and leader within that school system and countywide. He began his career as a high school social studies teacher with North Rockland in 1960. After approximately a decade in the classroom, Dr. Mello would move on to serve the North Rockland community as an assistant principal at Haverstraw Middle School, the principal of West Haverstraw Elementary School, and the district's first special education administrator. In 1983, Anthony was elevated to the role of assistant superintendent of instruction, which he held until his retirement from the New York State education system in the spring of 1994.

Born on April 19, 1939, Anthony was born Antonio DaCosta Mello to Alipio DaCosta and Feliciana Mello, and was raised in Napanoch, N.Y. along with his sister Marie, whom he is predeceased by. Anthony graduated from Ellenville High School and proceeded to attend Hartwick College in Oneonta, N.Y., where he earned a degree in history. The son of Portuguese immigrants, Anthony was the first member of his immediate family to attend college. Anthony would go on to graduate with a Masters Degree from Hunter College in New York City, and would eventually earn a Doctorate Degree in Administration from the University of Bridgeport in Bridgeport Connecticut. His family remembers with immense pride the many long weekends and evenings Tony spent both driving to and from Bridgeport to attend classes and working arduously on his doctoral dissertation, while simultaneously taking on broader roles with the North Rockland schools and lovingly raising a family of three boys.

After retiring from the North Rockland School District, Dr. Mello went on to work at the Fordham University Graduate School of Education, as the Assistant Superintendent of the Tenafly Public Schools in New Jersey, and as an education consultant. Ultimately, Dr. Mello would long serve as the Executive Director of New York State ASCD, an affiliate of ASCD (the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development), one of the world's leading educational leadership organizations dedicated to advancing best practices and policies for the success of each learner. He worked in that capacity until this spring. Anthony's work as an educator was immensely important to him, as he always held firmly to the belief that all children can learn. His lifetime as an educator inspired two of his sons, David and Christopher, to become teachers with the New York City Department of Education and the Hanover Park Schools respectively.

Anthony was an immensely loving and caring father, who took tremendous joy in watching his family come together every summer on Long Beach Island, N.J., where the Mello's have long had a summer home. His family is uplifted by the fact that he was able to spend one last summer surrounded by his wife, three sons, their wives, and his four granddaughters who always brought a joyous smile to his face. His wife Mary; his three sons Stephen, David, and Christopher; his four granddaughters Anna, Sienna, Isadora, and Zoey; and numerous nieces and nephews survive him. Services arranged by the Wanamaker and Carlough Funeral Home, Suffern, N.Y.

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