Wilmington priest Roberto Balducelli dies at 99

August 11, 2013 7:25:18 PM PDT
The Rev. Roberto Balducelli, a longtime Wilmington priest who served St. Anthony of Padua Parish for decades, has died. He was 99.

The church and city officials announced Balducelli died Friday night on the eve of his 100th birthday. Balducelli was pastor of Wilmington's St. Anthony's Parish from 1959 to 1988 and remained active until his death.

In a statement Sunday, Wilmington Mayor Dennis Williams called Balducelli a transformational religious leader. Balducelli is credited with building Padua Academy, the Antonian high-rise for seniors and the St. Anthony's in the Hills summer camp, among other achievements.

Delaware Gov. Jack Markell said thousands more people will continue to benefit from the community that Balducelli leaves behind.

A viewing is planned for Tuesday at St. Anthony's Parish. A funeral will be held Wednesday.