MOUNT CARMEL — Joseph “Jazz” Diminick, 86, of 335 West Ave., passed away Wednesday, July 2, 2014, at home surrounded by his family.
He was born Aug. 25, 1927, at home on Oak Street in Kulpmont, a son of the late Joseph J. and Gertrude (Paskevich) Diminick. On Oct. 7, 1950, in St. Edward’s Church, Shamokin, he married the former Ann Louise C. Reichwein who survives.
Jazz was a lifelong resident of the Kulpmont, Mount Carmel area.
He was a 1946 graduate of Kulpmont High School, Boston College in 1950, and received his master’s degree from Penn State University.
Jazz began a career as an educator, coach and PIAA Sports Official that spanned 55 years. He was best known as the head football coach at Mount Carmel Area from 1962-1992, where he compiled 287 victories, making him the winningest football coach in Pennsylvania history at that time. He also coached basketball, track and field, and baseball. He was inducted into the Pennsylvania Football Coaches Hall of Fame, Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, Boston College Sports Hall of Fame, and the National High School Federation Sports Hall of Fame. His greatest football achievement, however, was sending over 200 boys away to college, mostly on full scholarships.
He was a member of Divine Redeemer Church, formerly St. Peter’s Church, Knights of Columbus, Elks and the Holy Name Society.
He was blessed with six sons and daughters-in-law, as well as 19 grandchildren and one great-grandchild. He had great pleasure in coaching all of his sons in both football and track. All six sons played football in college.
In addition to his wife, he is survived by his children, Gary, his wife Patricia (Basso), of Essex Junction, Vt., and their children, Dr. Noah, his wife Lindsay, and daughter, Lucy, Erin McGaughnea, her husband, Chris, and Sean; Dr. Kenneth, his wife, Lori, of Lemoyne, and their children, Joseph, Alyssa, Michael and Kiersten; Joseph, of Orlando, Fla., and his children, Tyler, Lauren and Carolina; Edward, his wife, Elizabeth, of Kingsport, Tenn., and their children, Bradley, Chad and Matthew; John, his wife, Kristin, of Mountville, and their children, Luke, Conner and Paige; Dr. Michael, his wife, Katie, of Lynchburg, Va., and their children, Hunter, Spencer and Taylor; a sister, Alma Mannello and her husband, Charles, of Kulpmont; his niece, Cindy, nephew, Charles, and their families.
Jazz is well known for his contributions to the athletic community however, his family will remember their Pap best for the great joy he received from being with his children, grandchildren and great-grandchild whether it was the holidays, at the beach or just together “on the Avenue.” Pap was always the coach not only in athletics but in all aspects of life. He taught us humility, patience, respect, hard work and the importance of family. He gave us the gift of witnessing true love in his relationship with his best friend, and love of his life of 64 years, our Nana. We are truly blessed and grateful for all he has given us and for having him as the “head coach” of our family.
A viewing will be held from 4 to 9 p.m. Monday, with a prayer service at 8, in the Richard F. Beierschmitt Memorial Auditorium, Mount Carmel Jr. Sr. High School, 600 W. Fifth St., Mount Carmel. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Tuesday at Divine Redeemer Church, 300 West Avenue, Mount Carmel with the Rev. Martin O. Moran III as celebrant. Anyone wishing to attend the funeral Mass should meet at 10:45 a.m. Tuesday.
Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Kulpmont.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Ed Romance Chapter Sports Hall of Fame, Jazz Diminick Scholarship Fund, UNB Bank, 1 N. Oak St., Mount Carmel, PA 17851, or to Divine Redeemer Church, 438 West Ave., Mount Carmel, PA 17851.
The C.J. Lucas Funeral Home, Inc., 27 N. Vine St., Mount Carmel, is handling the arrangements.
To send condolences to the family, please visit www.cjlucasfuneralhome.com.