Edward LaTourette, Teacher from UFT
* Curtis HS, Staten Island
Edward LaTourette found both a calling and a career in teaching global and U.S. history at Curtis HS on Staten Island. “A student would ask a question and he would launch into a story,” bringing the subject matter to life in vivid detail, said his wife, Stefanie. “Ed truly loved his job,” she said.
“Ed was one of the first to arrive in the school building every morning,“ said Chapter Leader John Pillarella. He was also the first to volunteer to cover a class in any emergency, Pillarella said. “He was incredibly considerate; a guy who would do anything to help his fellow teachers.”
Edward, 46, died on April 24.
He began his teaching career at John Jay HS in Park Slope, Brooklyn, before transferring to Curtis HS, where he taught for 19 of his 23 years as an educator.
Edward had an undergraduate degree in history and two master’s degrees in education, all from the College of Staten Island. His particular areas of interest were World War II and the Great Depression.
His other passions included anything related to Star Wars or to DC and Marvel comics, and he eagerly awaited each upcoming superhero movie. He shared that enthusiasm with students, friends and family.
Eighteen months ago, a new passion entered his life with the birth of his daughter, Ella Rose. “Everyone in the building could see how happy he was when he married Stefanie and when his daughter, Ella Rose, was born,” said Pillarella. “His happiness was important to all of us,” Pillarella said.
“Ed was one of the nicest human beings you could ever meet. He never raised his voice, got mad or spoke negatively about anyone,” said his brother-in-law, Peter DeFeo. “Whether it was watching Elmo with his daughter, Ella, dancing to songs from “Footloose,” or swimming in the pool, Ed’s smile was the brightest when he was with his girls,” said DeFeo.
Pillarella said his colleague “will be missed by all of his brothers and sisters in the Curtis UFT Chapter.”
In addition to his wife and their young daughter, Edward is survived by his parents, Pat and Edward; his sister, Patty Semens; and four nieces.
Contributions may be made to his family at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/stephanie-and-ella