Obituary: Enrico DeMatto Has Died At 76 – Stuart, Fla. – It is with immense sadness and disbelief that I inform you I lost my “Ricky” Tuesday, March 22, 2022. He was 76. Seemingly healthy less than two months ago, events occurred that revealed he was full of cancer that had metastasized – no chance of cure.
Our children, grandchildren, family, and friends were able to visit. There were phone calls and an overwhelming number of beautiful cards sent to and read by Rick. The support of family and friends will never be forgotten. I thank you all for truly making his final journey peaceful, as he left knowing he was loved and that he made a difference in this world. Rick and I focused on how thankful we were for the love and life we have shared, knowing we have been so blessed.
His journey, with the help of Hospice, was painless and peaceful, and as he requested, listening to the crashing waves from the living room in our home, with me by his side. He maintained his 1000-watt smile and good humor throughout. He was the most wonderful, warm loving man. He will be sorely missed by all.
Rick was born in New Haven, to Enrico F. and Rose DeMatto, who preceded him in death along with his only sister Judy. He leaves behind his wife Luanne; son Jeffrey (Rebecca) of Canterbury, grandson Mason and his mother Melissa; son Michael Long (Christina) of Waterford, grandson Austin; nieces, cousins, and many dear friends.
Rick graduated from Southern Connecticut State University where he earned his bachelor’s and masters in Special Education. Rick retired from Waterford Public Schools after 24 years as the Supervisor/Director of Special Education. Rick’s love of special education, advocacy for students with special needs, and commitment to his staff were legendary. He was an exceptional leader who cared about people and throughout his life, he touched so many.
His professional and community activities are too numerous to list. He left his mark in leadership roles at the Friendship School, Waterford Youth Service Bureau, Waterford Rotary (Paul Harris Award Recipient), Groton Permanent School Building Committee, Waterford Country School, Seaside Regional Center, Camp Harkness, Literacy Volunteers, and Child & Family Agency. Rick selflessly served the underserved well into retirement, including various Board roles for The Arc Eastern Connecticut as well as an Ambassador-at-large to The Arc of the United States.
Rick’s leadership, vision, and support within The Arc will serve the agency and its participants and families for decades to come. If you would like to honor Rick’s memory, donations may be made to The Arc Eastern Connecticut, 125 Sachem Street, Norwich, CT 06360. A Celebration of Rick’s life will be scheduled at the convenience of his family this summer.