A. Nicholas “Nick” Del Pesco, a longtime Marina del Rey resident who served as chairman of the board at the Marina City Club, died March 8th. He was 84.
Del Pesco was born in Connecticut on May 14th, 1923, as the eighth of nine children and was christened Angelo Nicola after his father.
He grew up in the town of Danielson and attended Killingly High School, where he was active in theater. Del Pesco, who had a singing voice of professional quality, performed the “Captain of the Pinafore” role in the operetta Pinafore, his family said.
Following high school, Del Pesco attended Tufts University on a scholarship. He earned a naval commission through the Reserve Officers Training Core (ROTC) and served as a lieutenant in the Pacific during World War II, where he commanded a PC Patrol Craft.
Following his discharge from the Navy, he returned to Tufts, where he obtained his Bachelor of Science in 1947, and he later earned a law degree from the University of Michigan.
Del Pesco, who served an apprenticeship at the law firm of Wright & Rundle in Pittsburgh, held several executive management positions.
He was employed by U. S. Steel and later worked at Space Technology Labs before launching his career in worldwide industrial operations at TRW, Inc.
During Del Pesco’s years at TRW, the company oversaw the Air Force ICBM (intercontinental ballistic missile) program, built a series of Pioneer spacecraft and designed a global military communications network. Del Pesco commuted between San Francisco and Santa Monica and traveled extensively on company business.
He retired from TRW in 1976, the same year his mother Charlotte passed away, and he gave a number of modern artworks to the California Institute of Technology in her memory.
As a resident of the Marina City Club in Marina del Rey, Del Pesco served as chairman of the club board for a number of years and contributed a regular column of philosophy and humor to the club magazine.
Though increasingly hampered by multiple sclerosis, Del Pesco continued attending cultural and sporting events, socializing with his many friends and serving on the boards of several service organizations, according to his family.
He was a mentor to many young people who credit their professional success to his wise council and his example of infectious optimism in the face of a debilitating disease, his family said.
Del Pesco is survived by his adopted son, James Bennett Del Pesco; brothers Bob Del Pesco of San Luis Obispo, and AlFonso Del Pesco of Danielson, Connecticut; and many friends and family members.
A memorial service was held in Santa Monica Saturday, March 22nd.