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June 23, 1934 – Oct. 28, 2012

John F. Lettieri, a retired Buffalo schoolteacher, died Sunday in his Town of Tonawanda home after a long illness. He was 78.

The Buffalo native was a graduate of Canisius High School, where he earned All-Catholic honors on a football team that went undefeated in 1951.

He received a bachelor’s degree from Canisius College and a master’s degree from Buffalo State College.

Mr. Lettieri taught at Cardinal Dougherty High School before moving on to the Buffalo Public Schools as a special-education teacher for many years at Burgard High School.

He retired from teaching in 1992, after 36 years.

Mr. Lettieri was a lifelong resident of Buffalo’s West Side until about eight years ago, when he moved to Tonawanda.

In 2005, Canisius High School recognized his accomplishments as a high school athlete by inducting him into its sports Hall of Fame.

Mr. Lettieri enjoyed jazz and horse racing and annually took a trip to Florida.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, the former Jean Marinaro; four daughters, Michelle Giambra, Patricia Campobello, Joann and Regina; two sons, Victor and Joseph; and a sister, Joann Zimmerman.

A memorial Mass will be offered at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday in St. Mark Catholic Church, 401 Woodward Ave.