Mr. Frank R. Degni, 63, died on Saturday, November 26, 2011, after a lengthy illness, at St. Luke's Home. He was born in Utica on January 29, 1948, the son of Julie Forgione Degni and the late Arcangelo Degni.
Throughout his youth, Mr. Degni attended the School of Art at Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute, studying with instructors Al Wardle, Jim McDermid and Vincent Clemente. With a talent for sculpture in clay, plaster and wood, Mr. Degni was guided throughout those years by William C. Palmer, Director of the School of Art, who selected him to appear on the cover of the February-March 1961 Museum of Art/School of Art Bulletin. In 1966, Mr. Degni's submission to the National Collegiate Sculpture Awards Contest, sponsored by the Garden of the Patriots in Florida, garnered him a certificate in “recognition of the artistic excellence of sculpture” for his large clay sculpture of the head of writer Henry David Thoreau.
A 1966 graduate of Notre Dame High School, Mr. Degni attended the Kansas City Art Institute and then entered Utica College of Syracuse University, receiving a B. A. in political science in 1971. After his college graduation, Mr. Degni worked for six months with students in the Utica Head Start Program.
Mr. Degni is survived by his beloved mother, Julie Degni, and siblings Marie D. Sturges (Harry) of Ravena, N.Y. , Robert A. Degni (Francine Matalon-Degni) of Manhattan, and Janet C. Degni of Utica, N.Y. Other survivors include nephews John S. Fitzgerald, III of Albany, N.Y., Brian A. Sturges of Los Angeles, California, and niece Sarah M. Degni of Astoria, N.Y. as well as several cousins.
Mr. Degni's family is most appreciative of the compassionate care Frank received from the nursing staff at St. Luke's Home and the medical staff at St. Luke's Hospital.
Contributions in Frank's memory may be made to the Munson-Williams-Proctor Art Institute, Utica College, or a charity of one's choice. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.
Relatives and friends are invited and may call Tuesday from 4-7 p.m. at the Nunn & McGrath Funeral Directors, 470 French Rd., Utica. Funeral services will be Wednesday at 9:15 a.m. from the funeral home and 10:00 a.m. from St. Mary Mt. Carmel/Blessed Sacrament Parish where a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated. Interment will take place in Calvary Cemetery.
JC, Mrs. Degni and family, we have been praying for you ever since your call to let us know that Frank has passed. I know how much he meant to all of you. Our hearts go out to you.
Posted by: Laura Wirtjes | Friday, December 09, 2011
I received the news of Frank''s passing today. My thoughts are with all of you at this time. I have many fond memories of Frank and of course all of you especially during the holiday season.
Posted by: Louis Degni | Sunday, December 04, 2011
My deepest sympathy to Mrs Degni and Frank''s entire family.
Posted by: Cathy Jantzen ( 3-11 nurse BW) | Thursday, December 01, 2011
Please accept my deepest sympathy. I remember playing with you and Frank on your street when we were kids. My best to you. Write back if you like.
Posted by: Dorothy Drees | Tuesday, November 29, 2011
To the Degni family my sincere sympathy on their loss.
Posted by: Francis Horgan U.P.D. Retired | Tuesday, November 29, 2011
My deepest sympathies. I enjoyed the many moments that I had with Frank over the years. He was a great guy.
Posted by: Lisa K Shaw | Monday, November 28, 2011
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