James M. Prencipe, 87, passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017 at the residence of his daughter and son-in-law in Harrisburg.
He was born to the late John and Mary Piccirillo Prencipe in Ridgway, Pennsylvania, and was predeceased by his brothers, John and Anthony.
James graduated from Ridgway High School. He earned a bachelor of science in education from Indiana State Teachers College, and a master's degree from University of Virginia.
James was a gifted athlete, playing football and basketball in high school, football at Indiana, and semi-pro football for the Johnsonburg Shamrocks. His golfing romance began as a caddy at Elk County Country Club, and continued to blossom as a player and teacher of the game to many aspiring golfers.
James was a proud veteran of the United States Army, serving as a captain in Germany during the Korean War, followed by many years of continued service as a reservist.
James returned to his place of birth to teach high school science and chemistry, and coach football and basketball, shaping numerous young lives. He retired from the Ridgway Area School District after 38 years of service.
He spent the past 19 years living on the Gulf Coast of Alabama, enjoying the meticulous fairways and greens of GlenLakes Golf Club.
He was a member of Elks Lodge, American Legion and Elk County Country Club of Ridgway for many years.
He and his wife, Dorothy, recently relocated to Pennsylvania.
He is survived by his loving wife, Dorothy Minor Prencipe; children, Mary Y. "Bonnie" McMahon (Thomas), Harrisburg Pennsylvania, James M. Prencipe Jr. (Patricia), Columbus, Mississippi, Renee J. Prencipe, Newnan Georgia, William J. Prencipe, Lake Park Florida; brother, Ben Principe (Joan), St. Mary's, Pennsylvania; seven grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; and many loving nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Margaret Mary Alacoque Catholic Church, 2800 Paxton Church Road, Harrisburg, PA 17103 on Tuesday, Jan. 10, 2017 at 1 p.m., with Rev. Paul C. Helwig to serve as celebrant.
Friends may call from 11 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the church prior to services on Tuesday.
Interment will follow at Indiantown Gap National Cemetery in Annville, Pennsylvania.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be considered for Ridgway Area School District, Science Curriculum Program, P.O. Box 447, Ridgway, PA 15853, or Ridgway Varsity Basketball Elker Basketball Clinic, 515 Hyde Ave., Ridgway, PA 15853. Coach Prencipe was instrumental in initiating the clinic many years ago.
Arrangements have been entrusted to the Jesse H. Geigle Funeral Home Inc., Harrisburg.
Relatives and friends are invited to share memories and condolences with the family at www.GeigleFuneralHome.com.