In memoriam: Al DelBello (1934-2015)

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Al DelBello – the former Yonkers mayor, Westchester County executive and New York state lieutenant governor who died May 15 at his home in Waccabuc at age 80 – was more than a public figure to WAG. As the husband of our publisher, Dee DelBello, “he was our patriarch,” says Robin Costello, administrative manager of Westfair Communications Inc., WAG’s parent company.

Tributes continue to pour in for the man who as the first Democrat to become Westchester County executive was a compassionate innovator in such areas as transportation, health care, women’s rights and the environment – unifying the county’s bus service; building Westchester Medical Center; creating the first Office for Women and Office for the Disabled in New York state; and constructing a garbage-to-energy facility in Peekskill. Geoff Thompson of the public relations firm Thompson & Bender noted many of these achievements in a sharply observed, moving letter to Patch, http://patch.com/new-york/rye/letter-editor-westchesters-own-al-delbello-political-leadership-and-so-much-more-0.

At WAG, Al – a partner in the White Plains law firm of DelBello Donnellan Weingarten Wise & Wiederkehr LLP – was a familiar face, dropping by to have lunch or dinner with Dee or to pick up their beloved West Highland terriers, Willie and Sollo. His was a kindly, gracious presence marked by a shy smile and ready good humor. The few lunches I had with him revealed a man who was a great listener and a great admirer of strong, brainy, artistic women – none more so than his wife. You could just feel the respect and love he had for her.

We shall miss not only his joy in accomplishment but his deep, abiding appreciation very much. – Georgette Gouveia

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