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Keith D'Elia

July 2, 2018
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Keith D’Elia, NPHS Track Star & Regents Scholar, Dead at 59
Keith Christopher D’Elia, a life-long resident of New Paltz, NY, died suddenly on July 2, 2018 in Phoenicia, NY, a fortnight shy of his 60th birthday.
A 1976 graduate of New Paltz Central High School, Keith distinguished himself as a Regents Scholar and athlete.  In Track & Field, he held the Ulster County high school record for over a decade in the 440 yard dash.  An accomplished chess player, quiz bowl veteran, amateur astronomer and musician, his high school exploits included a National Science Foundation prize for a paper on particle physics.
After New Paltz Central High School, Keith studied at the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University.   
While at Penn, Keith suffered his first bouts with an acute bipolar disorder.  It would afflict him his entire life and became especially severe in his final years.
Keith had a voracious intellect and artistic interests.  He loved journalism, jazz piano, history, physics, philosophy and languages.  A world traveler, he leaves behind friends across the globe.  He spent time at the Université of Franche Comté in Besançon, France, and the Internationale Akademie für Philosophie in Liechtenstein, and lived several years in Feldkirch, Austria.  New Paltz always remained his true home and community, where many provided him support and friendship. 
Keith is survived by his mother Margaret at Valley Vista Adult Assisted Living in Highland, NY, and siblings Greg, a State Department Official in Dubai; Anthony, Professor of History and Classics at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario, and Nancy, a teacher in New Paltz, NY.  His five nieces and nephews are citizens of the USA, Canada and France.  Keith’s father, Professor Donald J. D’Elia of SUNY New Paltz, passed away in 2009.  
The Capuchin Francisans will celebrate a Memorial Mass for Keith on July 15th at 6:30 pm at St. Joseph’s Church 34 S. Chestnut, New Paltz.  Please direct condolences to Margaret D’Elia at Valley Vista in Highland and donations to St. Joseph’s Church and any organization dedicated to helping the mentally ill.  Funeral arrangements under the direction of the E. B. Gormley Funeral Home 87 Main St. Phoenicia.  
 

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