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In Memory

Marianne Louise Delia (Sturchio)

From Neil Sturchio:

Marianne Delia (known as Mrs. Sturchio while teaching math and physics at SAHS in the '65-'66 and '67-'68 school years) passed away at home about three years ago.

Marianne Louise Delia May 28, 1934 - May 6, 2018 Marianne Louise Delia passed away quietly at home in her sleep on May 6, 2018, surrounded by her children. She was 83 years old.

Marianne was born in Summit, N.J., in 1934, the daughter of Ross Delia and Anna Russo Delia. Marianne grew up in nearby New Providence, N.J. She attended St. Teresa's School in Summit and then graduated from Our Lady of the Valley High School in Orange, N.J., in 1951. She entered Seton Hall University in South Orange, where she met her future husband, Malcolm Sturchio, then a chemistry instructor.

They married in 1952 (and subsequently divorced in 1976). Together, they had six children before Marianne turned 30, living in Newark, N.J., Berkeley Heights, Fair Lawn, N.J., and Teaneck, N.J., before settling in Berkeley Heights in 1958. Over the next decade, Marianne led a busy life of raising her children - with the usual round of sports, Cub Scouts, and Brownies - returning to school to complete her undergraduate degree at Fairleigh Dickinson University, and beginning a career as a secondary school teacher.

Her primary field of instruction was mathematics; she also taught earth science and physics when needed. She taught in the public schools in Boonton, N.J., and Summit as well as at Seoul American High School in Seoul, Korea, where she and her family lived in 1965-1966 and again in 1967-1968.

After returning from Korea in 1968, Marianne and her family moved to Short Hills, N.J., and she returned to teaching in the Millburn and Summit public schools, while also completing a master of arts in teaching degree at FDU. She was an early environmentalist, who initiated the first newspaper recycling program for the Millburn-Short Hills community. Marianne had always wanted to become a doctor, despite medical school deans telling her that no young woman with children should be going to medical school, and then when her children were all in school, that she was too old to embark on a medical career.

Marianne was a strong early feminist and not one to accept such discouragement. No U.S. medical school would accept her application in 1972, so, undeterred, she applied to and was accepted by the University of Rome to study for her M.D. She moved to Italy, became fluent in Italian, and obtained her degree in 1977.

She returned to New Jersey and began her residency at St. Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston, N.J., later moving to Muhlenberg Hospital in Plainfield, N.J., and St. Peter's Medical Center in New Brunswick, N.J. In 1980, she moved to California (another long-time dream) to take up a position as chief resident in obstetrics and gynecology at the San Joaquin County General Hospital in French Camp. A year later, she set up a private practice in obstetrics and gynecology in Manteca, Calif., with her daughter, June, as office manager.

She delivered hundreds of babies over the next decade - the only female obstetrician in the area, Marianne was also an early adopter in applying computer technology to managing her practice. In 1989, she moved to a staff physician role at Los Angeles County Medical Center and lived in Glendora, Calif. She retired in 2006 and moved to Newark, Del., in 2016.

Marianne Delia is survived by her children, Jeffrey Sturchio and his wife, Rebecca; Neil Sturchio and his wife, Dolores; June Sturchio; Malcolm Sturchio II and his wife, Helen Graves; Glenn Sturchio and his wife, Catherine, and Eva Sturchio; her six grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren. A memorial service will be held at Villa Walsh in Morristown, N.J., at a later date. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be sent to Nurses for Christ, P.O. Box 1028, Glendora, CA 91740, Telephone: (626) 315-7392, www.nurses4christ.com.