Tellitocci Earned Benwood’s Thanks

Many communities are blessed by a few residents who take personal interest in their towns and cities — and are willing to roll up their sleeves and toil to make life better for all of their neighbors.

Joseph “Joe” Tellitocci Jr. was that kind of man for his town, Benwood.

Among the many special activities in our area during the long Labor Day weekend was dedication of a memorial to Tellitocci, who died in March 2018 at age 65. Appropriately, the stone is at the site of another memorial, this one to the 119 people who died in a 1924 mine disaster in Benwood. Tellitocci spearheaded a campaign to have that monument erected. He and his son, also named Joseph, were honored as West Virginia History Heroes for their work on the project.

But Tellitocci was much more, as those dedicating the memorial to him on Monday recalled. He served as a city councilman from 1982-2002 and often went beyond that elected post to do good things for the community.

“Ironically, it’s Labor Day,” noted Benwood Police Chief Frank Longwell during the memorial dedication. “There’s not a person on earth who worked harder than Joe,” Longwell added.

Dedication of the memorial says much about how Tellitocci’s neighbors viewed him. Benwood was fortunate to have him.

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