NC mourns the loss of a colleague, coach and friend

Luciano BerardoccoThe Niagara College community is mourning the loss of a colleague, coach and friend.

Luciano Berardocco, purchasing administrator in Financial Services and assistant coach of the Niagara College Knights men’s soccer program, died suddenly on October 19 during a Knights practice. His colleagues will remember a co-worker and friend who was both helpful and kind, and a proud father with a gentle sense of humour.

“We’ve lost a highly valued and respected member of our team who was a key contributor to the success of our department and our college.”  said Financial Services director Vince Malvaso. “More importantly, we have lost a member of our Financial Services family who was a good friend and a genuinely kind, thoughtful and caring person. Luciano will be greatly missed.”

“This is a tremendous loss for our college community,” added president Dan Patterson. “Luciano’s contributions to life at Niagara College were many: he was a valued member of our financial services team, where he was highly regarded for his expertise, his professional approach and friendly and kind manner, and he enhanced the lives of our student-athletes as a highly-respected member of the coaching staff for our men’s soccer program. His sudden, untimely loss is shocking for all of us, and we send our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends.”

Known to his friends and colleagues as Luch, he joined the college in January 2008 and was a key member of the Financial Services team. As the procurement administrator, he held a wide range of duties and responsibilities related to purchasing – from being the resource person and key contact for purchasing-related matters, negotiating terms and conditions with suppliers, and working with college staff and external vendors to provide fair and open competitions for purchases and projects.

Known for his technical expertise, he was a key resource within the financial services team, and he represented the department and the college well while maintaining a student focus.

“Luch had a calm demeanor and pleasant  attitude that made him very approachable. He was always supportive and considerate of others and willing to go above and beyond to lend a helping hand,” said Bill Crumm, manager of Budgets and Accounting. “The true loves in life were his two daughters, soccer and making connections with everyone who crossed his path. Luch will be deeply missed but never forgotten for the impact he had on people, and his positive outlook on life.”

Luch’s professional contributions extended beyond the walls of Niagara College. He was a valued member of the both the Niagara Public Purchasing Committee (NPPC), a co-operative purchasing group, and the Ontario Colleges Procurement Management Association (OCPMA), a provincial group that provides strategic leadership on supply-chain activities for Ontario colleges. Luch was co-leader of the OCPMA’s sustainability committee, where his work was recognized by his provincial colleagues.

Wray Hodgson, OCPMA chair, recently remarked that Luch’s “outstanding leadership has been a valuable resource to both OCPMA and the college sector.”

Luch also enhanced college life through his involvement with Niagara College Athletics. Since 2012, he had been a member of the coaching staff for the Knights men’s soccer program, and he also assisted with the women’s program. He was popular among student-athletes and coaches alike, and known as a well-prepared and caring coach.

“Luciano was a very bright soccer mind, a caring coach and a good man. He wore the Niagara College Knights logo with pride,” said head coach Frank DeChellis. “He was an integral part of our program, not only tactically but also from a team chemistry point of view.”

Dechellis noted that Luch was accessible to all players from both squads.

“He was very well respected and passionate about the soccer program’s overall direction. His approach to the game was always very thorough and well thought out,” he said. “On both an individual and team level, he contributed to our discussions on how to enhance the experience of each student-athlete and the group in general.”

Luch is survived by his daughters, Elena and Simona, parents, Leilo and Concetta, and his sister Assunta. For those who wish, donations toward the education of his daughters may be arranged through the J. J. Patterson and Sons Funeral Residence.

Visitation takes place at the J. J. Patterson and Sons Funeral Residence on Young Street in Welland on Saturday, October 24 from 2 pm to 4 pm and 7 pm to 9 pm, and Sunday, October 25 from 2 pm to 4 pm and 7 pm to 9 pm. The funeral service takes place at the Parish Community of St. Kevin on Niagara Street in Welland on Monday, October 26 at 10 am. Further information is available at

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