Joe Deptula III, a former Derby football captain and a long-time coach in Seymour, died Saturday following a year-long bout with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). He was 51.
Deptula was captain of the 1980 Derby football team, who later settled in Oxford. He worked 21 years as a salesman for DiGiorgi Roofing and Siding and became an active coaching member of the Seymour youth and high school football programs. His two sons Ben and Joe IV were standout players for the Wildcats in the early 2000s.
“He was everything that old-school Valley football was about,” said Seymour coach Tom Lennon, who coached as a Seymour assistant alongside Deptula and now coaches with both Ben and Joe. “He was passionate about the game, whether playing at Derby or coaching at Seymour and watching his sons playing at Seymour.”
“He wore every win and loss on his sleeve. Just a great guy, would do anything for anything for us, for his boys Joe and Ben and his wife, Sandy, and for his friends and family. We’ll miss him dearly.”
Seymour has set up a scholarship fund in Deptula’s memory to benefit a graduating senior of the Seymour football program.
Calling hours are Wednesday, July 2 from 4-8 p.m. at the Edward F. Adzima Funeral Home at 253 Elizabeth St. in Derby. The funeral will be Thursday, 11 a.m. July 3 at St. Michael’s Church on 25 Maple Ave., Beacon Falls.