Anthony J. Civitello, 73; Golfer

Posted: June 11, 1989

Anthony J. Civitello, 73, a retired plant manager for the Continental Can Co. of Paoli, died last Sunday at Paoli Memorial Hospital.

He was born in Malvern, where he lived his entire life.

He was a graduate of West Chester High School and had studied mechanical engineering at the Drexel Institute of Technology.

In 1934, Mr. Civitello started as a box boy and bag tender at Betner's Bag Co. of Devon. He rose through the ranks, working as a machine adjustor, foreman and assistant plant manager.

Mr. Civitello continued to work there after the company was bought by the Continental Can Co. in 1954. He became plant manager in 1960, a position he maintained until he retired in 1978.

Mr. Civitello also had a long career at the Chester Valley Golf Club in Frazer. When the club opened in 1929, Mr. Civitello, then a Boy Scout, raised the American flag. The flag there flew at half-staff last Sunday.

From a Boy Scout, he became a caddie, and in 1950 he was the club's champion. Mr. Civitello holds the record for shooting a 30 on the front nine of the club course before it was remodeled in the late 1960s. He was an active club member for 50 years, and was club president for two years in the early 1980s.

For Mr. Civitello, golf didn't just mean an afternoon out.

He restored old golf clubs and patiently built new ones - from scratch.

When members of the Senior Pro Golf Tour came to Chester Valley for the Bell Atlantic/St. Christopher's Classic, Mr. Civitello volunteered for the locker-room committee. For four years, he was chairman of the committee, which looked after players such as Arnold Palmer and Gary Player. Last year, although he was no longer chairman, he still volunteered his time.

Mr. Civitello enjoyed spending time with his family, including his wife, Helen Forcine Civitello, whom he married in 1941, and their three children.

He had seven grandchildren, who often accompanied him as he pursued another favorite hobby - fresh-water fishing.

He also grew vegetables, and enjoyed watching birds in his back yard.

He was a former member of the Devon Rotary Club.

He was a member of St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Malvern.

Besides his wife, he is survived by two sons, Richard A. and Michael J.; a daughter, Claire Kurschner; seven grandchildren; two great grandchildren; four sisters, and two brothers.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated Thursday at St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Malvern. Interment was in Philadelphia Memorial Park, Frazer.

Donations may be made to the American Heart Association, P.O. Box 12, Newtown Square, Pa. 19073.

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