Coast Guard vet Vincent Anthony, 90, dies
U.S. Coast Guard veteran Vincent J. Anthony enjoyed traveling the world by sea and admired the splendor of the great bodies of water.
"My father was a true hero in every sense of the word," said his daughter April Anthony-Scaturro, of Smithtown. "He served his country valiantly. He was a staunch friend, a loving husband and a wonderful, caring father."
Anthony, of New Hyde Park, died Sept. 15 after battling complications from multiple myeloma, myelodysplastic syndromes and diabetes. He was 90.
Anthony was born on April 20, 1922, in Manhattan and was raised in Astoria. He went on to become a semipro baseball player around 1939, and tried out for the then-New York Giants.
Anthony served in the Coast Guard as a chief quartermaster from 1940 to 1946. Anthony escorted as many as 70 merchant ships to the Mediterranean, through southern France and North Africa, his daughter said.
Later, he patrolled Iceland, Greenland, Labrador and Baffin Island in Canada, breaking ice and escorting merchant ships through treacherous waters. He also patrolled the waters through New Guinea and the Philippines despite being injured and burned on duty after an explosion on the ship, his daughter said.
"The thing that defined my father was his wartime experience," she said. "It played an important role for everything he did from then on. He was very reliable and conscientious."
In 1948, Anthony married Catherine Biscone. They had four children and lived in New Hyde Park for 58 years. She died last December.
Anthony went on to work in the airline industry for more than 20 years until the early 1970s, then became administrator of Old Westbury Gardens. He later worked in North Hempstead Town's planning department for 10 years, retiring in 1997.
Following his retirement, Anthony volunteered and became vice president of the New Hyde Park Civilian Patrol. In 1990, he co-founded the Long Island Coasties, an association for Coast Guard veterans. The group met monthly for lunch and toured the Coast Guard stations on Long Island.
"We wish him smooth sailing on a peaceful sea," his daughter said. "He loved the sea and we all adored him."
Anthony is buried at Calverton National Cemetery.
Other survivors include daughter Linda, of Hampton Bays; sons Brian, of Acton, Calif., and Kenneth, of Levittown; a brother, Donald, 86, of upstate New Hartford; and three grandchildren.