James M. Desiderio Jr. died in 2010 at the age fifty-two. He was a champion wrestler and graduate of E.L. Meyers High School and Miami Dade College. Known by most as “Desi”, he was a devoted son, brother, family member, teammate, coach, and friend. He was a successful business owner and leader in the funeral services business; a civil servant through his years as a deputy coroner; a skilled craftsman in a family business; a devoted church volunteer and leader; and a good citizen of the community in which he lived through his involvement with charitable boards, committees, associations and events. Much of his life was dedicated to the sport of wrestling: As a tough competitor on the mat, as a coach who guided hundreds of young men to be their best; and as a PIAA referee.
Desi was devoted to his family, profession, community, church and friends. In establishing and sustaining this educational scholarship those who were blessed to have known him hold hope that another wrestler may someday become as involved, concerned and caring as James M. Desiderio, Jr.
The James M. Desiderio, Jr. Scholarship Memorial Scholarship Fund provides a graduating senior and squad member of any Wyoming Valley Conference Wrestling High-school program (Berwick; James M. Coughlin; Crestwood; Dallas; GAR Memorial; Hanover Area; Hazleton Area; Lake Lehman; Elmer L. Meyers; Greater Nanticoke; Pittston Area; Tunkhannock; Wyoming Area; and Wyoming Valley West) with a one-time scholarship. Preference given to wrestlers of E.L. Meyers High School if fulfilling stated criteria.
This scholarship supports the attendance to any post-secondary institution (e.g., two-year, four-year, technical, accredited, or community college) and may be used for undergraduate tuition, room, board and related expenses in any year full- or part-time attendance, up to the maximum amount rewarded.
Vito Pasone was one of the first 3 recipients of a James. M. Desiderio Scholarship. To see Vito in action at Appalachian State, click here. We're all so proud of your success, Vito!