2009-08-07 / Front Page

Dr. Louis Amadio devoted to family and education

'He was always a gentleman.'

T he academic community is reeling from the loss a great friend.

Former Superintendent of Schools Dr. Louis Amadio passed away after an illness on Monday night, and now co-workers and family are speaking out about the legacy he leaves. Dr. Amadio served as superintendent from 1983 through 1994.

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Nadine Binkley said she knew Dr. Amadio "for over 30 years. Lou was always the consummate gentleman. … He was a mentor to all new superintendents coming into the job across the state."

She said Dr. Amadio "knew everyone by name, and also offered encouragement to the new members as well as superintendents who had been in the job a while.

"Lou genuinely cared about public education in Leominster and across the state. He was very well respected by everyone, especially the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents. He was exceptional with professional development for all, and his death saddens not only me, but the entire community of superintendents across Massachusetts. I will miss him deeply, he was very special to me."

Dr. Binkley said e-mails from superintendents across the state were flowing in, and all expressed their grief over his death.

Mayor Dean Mazzarella said Dr. Amadio "was wonderful to work with, and he left an incredible legacy. He was deeply devoted to the issue of education for everyone. He had an amazing network of friends out there. Dr. Amadio was an inspiration to all who worked with him. He made the Leominster school system one of the best around.

"I would see him around town quite a bit. He was sick but never complained. He is one of those guys that no matter what, you just expect him to be there. It is very sad he is gone."

Dr. Amadio's brother-in-law Robert Antonucci described Dr. Amadio as "a great family man. He has three children, and seven grandchildren, and the entire family was very close.

"He not only was a great guy, he was my best friend. Lou had two main loves. First was the love of and for his family, and the second was his commitment to public education."

Antonucci said Dr. Amadio's father died when he was young, and left his mother to raise six children.

"I do believe that is why his commitment to his family, and the reason all the brothers and sisters are so close to this day. Lou always did the right thing. I think the experience of losing their father made the family closer," he said.

Dr. Amadio loved baseball, mainly the Boston Red Sox, and also was an avid golfer. He also took great joy in watching his grandsons play baseball, and would travel to wherever they were playing.

Antonucci described Dr. Amadio as "very friendly to everyone. He was always a gentleman, the type of guy you liked being around. Our friendship lasted 40 years."

Over his career, Dr. Amadio received many awards for his accomplishments, such as Citizen of the Year in Leominster, and the prestigious Professional Development Award from the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents. Another highlight at the Johnny Appleseed Elementary School named after him.

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