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“My teacher, my mentor, my friend. Girard ”
1 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“Hi, I am sorry for your loss. May the God of comfort and peace be with you and your family. 2 Corinthans 1: 3 & 4 ”
2 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“Taught with Joe, a real class act! ”
3 of 72 | Posted by: Sue Burk - Madison

“Girard ”
4 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“(((Mr A))) ”
5 of 72 | Posted by: John

“Christine ”
6 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“More than any other person outside of my family, Joe Acerra made a positive difference in my life, from the first private lesson in fifth or sixth...Read More »
7 of 72 | Posted by: Bruce Meyer - Arlington, MA

“So sorry to hear Mr.A's passing. Had in band 67,68 &69! He was a wonderful teacher, mentor and friend to all! A man one of us ever forgot! ”
8 of 72 | Posted by: Debbie - Madison, OH

“I was saddened to hear of the passing of Joe. I have fond memories of Joe as he helped me during my first years of teaching at Madison. He and Ben...Read More »
9 of 72 | Posted by: Josh Perez - Solon, OH

“I too went into music because of Mr. A. I do something else now, but I hope that I help people too. I know that Gary D. helped me at band camp; I...Read More »
10 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“Mr A was such a wonderful mentor and teacher!A wonderful man has left this earth!! ”
11 of 72 | Posted by: Pam Quiggle - Tempe, AZ

“Mr. "A" taught me a lot about music even more about life and love. I will be forever grateful to him and to all of you, his family. He was adored. ...Read More »
12 of 72 | Posted by: Lisa (Reed) Heichel Oxford, U.K.

“Rest in Peace Joe George Riedel ”
13 of 72 | Posted by: George Riedel - Akron, OH

“My sincere condolences to the Acerra family. Mr. A had an influence on MMHS students far beyond the band class, the bus, camp, the games and the...Read More »
14 of 72 | Posted by: Scott Feil, Class of '69 - TX

“My sincerest condolences to family and friends of Joe. He was a great colleague & a great person. ”
15 of 72 | Posted by: Randy Hoover - Columbiana, OH

“Dear Mrs. Acerra, Joe, Kathy and family:I am so sorry for your loss. Mr. A was more than a teacher, he was a role model, a mentor, guidance...Read More »
16 of 72 | Posted by: Connie (Proud) Hummel - PA

“Dear Mrs. Acerra, Joey & Kathy, my deepest sympathy for your loss. Mr. "A" was an amazing man. My biggest dream in life was to be in marching band....Read More »
17 of 72 | Posted by: Nancy (Ritter) Kuenzig - Akron,, OH

“My heartfelt condolences to the family of Mr. A. He was not only my band director in 1985 but a mentor in life. He made me feel at home when I moved...Read More »
18 of 72 | Posted by: Patrick Connor - Seattle, WA

“My condolences to the Acerra family. Band was my favorite thing about middle school and high school. Mr. A somehow managed to wrangle 100+ kids...Read More »
19 of 72 | Posted by: Catherine Fowler - Portland, OR

“I learned so much from from Mr A his love of music, students and life was exhilarating! Thank you for the best time in school ”
20 of 72 | Posted by: Rebecca Belfield Dunn - OH

“So sorry to hear of Mr. A's passing. My happiest memories of high school were being in the Madison Marching Band, he will be greatly missed. ”
21 of 72 | Posted by: Louise Tyukody-Harting - OH

“Linda, Joe, and Kathy, I'm so sorry to hear of Joe's passing. He was truly one of a kind and had a big impact on my life. One of my favorite memories...Read More »
22 of 72 | Posted by: Andrew Taylor - Bostwick, FL

“P.S. Joe was the reason I went into teaching. Being his drum major in the 1974-1975 marching season, helping him at band camp, at Ripley, WV, and...Read More »
23 of 72 | Posted by: Gary Deurlein - Madison, OH

“Thanks for the memories, God Bless!Sandy Ungers Choma (Madison,Ohio 78'). ”
24 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“I am at such a loss upon hearing of Joe's passing. I am sure all of the family knows what he meant to me. I was so glad to keep in contact,after...Read More »
25 of 72 | Posted by: Gary Deurlein - Madison, OH

“I am so sad to hear of Mr.A's passing.He was our teacher but more than that he was our friend.He expected the best from us and knew how to help us ...Read More »
26 of 72 | Posted by: Cindy Kerry (Zall) - Cape Coral, FL

“My thoughts and prayers are with Mr. A's family. This is such a great loss of an amazing man and heavens gain. In 1984 I move to Madison and during...Read More »
27 of 72 | Posted by: Jennifer Stephens - phoenix, AZ

“So many times over the years, I have reflected on Mr. A's sincerity, his ability to inspire, and his loving presence in the band room. I remember...Read More »
28 of 72 | Posted by: Heather Smith Koch - Greenville, NC

“My deepest sympathy to The Acerra family. I am so thankful to have been lucky enough to have Mr. A as my music teacher and band director. I fondly...Read More »
29 of 72 | Posted by: Margaret Gaio-Pedersen '76 - NY

“Thanks, Mr. A, for helping my husband Tom develop his love of music which be has passed on to our four children. He was in the BGSU band when I met...Read More »
30 of 72 | Posted by: Sandy Nichols - Sylvania, OH

“The neighborhood won't be the same without Joe. We've always loved hearing the melodies from his students drifting over to our yard. Our deepest...Read More »
31 of 72 | Posted by: Lee and Rob Melius - Madison, OH

“Thanks, Mr. A, for helping my husband Tom develop his love of music which be has passed on to his children. He was in the BGSU band when I met him,...Read More »
32 of 72 | Posted by: Sandy Nichols - Sylvania, OH

“Dear Linda and family, We have lost a rare man, a gentle person, a stellar teacher, a motivator and a true friend. Several times Joe drove me to...Read More »
33 of 72 | Posted by: Zita Knific - madison, OH

“I will always remember Joe as a fine music educator and above all a true gentleman. My deepest sympathies to the family ”
34 of 72 | Posted by: Michael Elias - Sagamore Hills, OH

“We're so sorry this has come to pass and we send our sincerest condolences to the Acerras. Whenever we saw him, Mr. Acerra always made us laugh and...Read More »
35 of 72 | Posted by: Dale C. Deering - Friend

“thank you Mr. A for all you did for my children..they loved you ”
36 of 72 | Posted by: Donna Reed - Madison, OH

“Mr. Acerra brought the love of music to so many of us. Thank you for sharing him - ”
37 of 72 | Posted by: Janet Swank - NC

“I am so sad to hear of Mr. A's passing. My sympathy to his family. He was an awesome band teacher. You are all in my thoughts.Diana Loudermilk ...Read More »
38 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“You will truly be missed. So many lives you have touched. ”
39 of 72 | Posted by: Patricia covell - Madison

“What a great man and teacher. To this day I am still involved in music and it has been such a joy in my life. Thank you for everything Mr. A! ”
40 of 72 | Posted by: Steve Belfield - Sugar Hill, GA

“I am so very saddened to learn of dear Mr. A's passing. It has been far too many years since that magical time in High School but the fond memories...Read More »
41 of 72 | Posted by: Ruth Moll Hannley - Tucson, AZ

“My condolences to Mrs. Acerra, Kathy and Joe. Thank you for sharing Mr. A with us band kids and the wider music community all those years. He will...Read More »
42 of 72 | Posted by: Melissa Archer (Smart) - OH

“Mr. A was a wonderful man. I had the honor of learning how to play both the trumpet and the baritone from him. He was also a wonderful director of...Read More »
43 of 72 | Posted by: Scott Piker - Madison, OH

“My thoughts and prayers are with the Acerra family. I made my first screeches on my saxophone in the fifth grade. I didn't really want to play that...Read More »
44 of 72 | Posted by: Vicki Feil - Floresville, TX

“Sympathy is extended to Linda and family. When our children were in high school and at Chapel United Methodist Church, Joe was a great part of our...Read More »
45 of 72 | Posted by: Sue Hammer - Hendersonville, NE

“Mr. A was a wonderful man and will be missed! ”
46 of 72 | Posted by: Chris Lorenz - Madison, OH

“My sincere condolences to Linda and the family. I will miss looking across the street and watching Joe work on his car. Such a nice man. ”
47 of 72 | Posted by: Nancy Geiger - Madison, OH

“Linda I am so sorry for your loss he was a great man and teacher, we will all miss him. Growing up in Madison and living not to far from...Read More »
48 of 72 | Posted by: Gina (Simons) Jones - Painesville, OH

“Will always remember the good times we had in band after Mr. A joined the faculty at MMHS. Band camp at camp Whitewood was always a favorite. He...Read More »
49 of 72 | Posted by: Sue Shelton Harper - Mayville, NY

“My favorite teacher, and such a truly wonderful person. It was such a privilege to know him. He was such a positive force in our community in so...Read More »
50 of 72 | Posted by: Kathy Oconnell

“In the past 20 hours I have read more heartfelt and touching stories on FB about Mr. A than I ever knew. It seems that each person had their own way...Read More »
51 of 72 | Posted by: Lynda Lowery - Commerce, GA

“God gained another angel. Thank you for all your hard work with the bands of Madison High School for so many years. You were an inspiration to many...Read More »
52 of 72 | Posted by: Tisha Anderson - Yucca, AZ

“I offer my deep condolences for the loss of your loved one. I hope the promise found at 1Thessalonians 4:14 offers you comfort and hope. ”
53 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“So sorry to hear of Mr. A's passing. I spent 4 years in the bandroom at the old Madison Memorial H.S. and many hours marching. Bandcamps were also...Read More »
54 of 72 | Posted by: Jacqueline Stillman Kovac - OH

“I knew Mr. A when I was in Madison High School. He tried really hard to make a musician out of me....but it wasn't meant to be. I ended up going...Read More »
55 of 72 | Posted by: Anne Warner (Franzolino) - OH

“Sorry for your loss. May God help ease your pain. ”
56 of 72 | Posted by: Donarae Disbro Breedlove - perry, OH

“I'm so sorry to hear of Mr A's passing. I hope that you take comfort in knowing how much of a positive influence he had on so many of our lives....Read More »
57 of 72 | Posted by: Jason Ensell - Parma, OH

“All four of my children played in the Madison High School Marching Band under the direction of "Mr. A". And all of them had the greatest respect for...Read More »
58 of 72 | Posted by: Sarah Fabian (formerly Sarah Guy) - OH

“I learned so much from from Mr A his love of music, students and life was exhilarating! Thank you for the best time in school ”
59 of 72 | Posted by: Rebecca Belfield Dunn - OH

“Joe was one of the very best. He was always a rock in my life always kind to all. I was lucky to call him friend. Thanks Joe for everything. You will...Read More »
60 of 72 | Posted by: John Sample - Madison, OH

“Joe was an excellent person and an outstanding educator. My God grant his soul eternal peace and happiness. Joe and Kathy, be strong for your mom. ...Read More »
61 of 72 | Posted by: John Loeffel - Painesville, OH

“So many fond memories! Those of us who learned to make music under his direction are truly saddened. My sincerest condolences to the family. ”
62 of 72 | Posted by: Jennifer Bugbee - Painesville, OH

“It was both an honor and a privilege to know and work with Mr Acerra. My thoughts and prayers to Linda, Joe and Kathy. Liz Meacham ”
63 of 72 | Posted by: Liz Meacham - Painesville, OH

“Wonderful person and teacher. Will always remember the massive band reunion to honor his retirement with so many past students traveling back to...Read More »
64 of 72 | Posted by: Andrea O'Neal - Grove City, OH


65 of 72 | Posted by: Hilary Hornbeck - Perry, OH

“So so sorry. What a great friend and neighbor. We will never forget MR. AThe Geigers ”
66 of 72 | Posted by: Donald Geiger - Madison, OH

“Mr. "A" could see hidden talent and knew how to help each of us bring it out to the benefit of the entire team. He was a kind man and great leader. I...Read More »
67 of 72 | Posted by: A friend

“I am sorry for your loss. I wish I could be with you but I will be at Holly's. I am sure that Joe is happy now, but I will miss him forever. ”
68 of 72 | Posted by: David Ayers - Madison, OH

“Don and I gained so much as young people because of Mr. A's teaching and especially being part of his Marching Blue Streaks. He was truly the teacher...Read More »
69 of 72 | Posted by: Anne (Cross) Webb and Don Webb - CA

“Dear Acerra Family, Jim and I were so very sorry to hear of Joe's passing. I will never forget the many years I spent with him as our choir...Read More »
70 of 72 | Posted by: Debbie Molner - Mentor, OH

“Dear Acerra Family, you must know that Mr A will be missed by many as a man who gave so much to his students and community. He was such a great...Read More »
71 of 72 | Posted by: Cyndi Tyukody-Walker - Clyde, NC

“My deepest condolences. If it hadn't been for Mr. A, I would never have been in band at MMHS, nor 2 years in Marching Band at the University of...Read More »
72 of 72 | Posted by: Glen Kimball Whipple - CA


Music Emblem

Joseph Acerra, Jr., age 79, of Madison, Ohio, passed away Wednesday, August 26, 2015 at home. He was born March 25, 1936 in Long Branch, NJ to Adeline (Santucci) and Joseph Salvatore Acerra, Sr. Joseph married Linda Jeanne Rideout at Toledo, OH on July 30, 1960.

Joseph attended Wintersville High School and graduated from the Ohio State University in 1959. Joseph taught music at Mt. Gilead High School and Madison High School. He retired from the Madison School System in 1990 then taught 4 more years at Notre Dame Cathedral Latin. Joseph, fondly known as "Mr. A", spent 60 years teaching music to children and adults. He truly made a difference in the lives of so many as not only a teacher of music, but also a teacher of life's lessons. His mantra was "Leave it better than you found it!" and "Practice, Practice, Practice!"

He is survived by his loving wife of 55 years, Linda; daughter, Kathryn (Tom Pearson) Acerra; son, Joseph Michael (Diane) Acerra; sister, Annamary Strand; many loved nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister, Agnes Abt.

Friends will be received 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, August 29, 2015 at The Behm Family Funeral Home, 26 River Street, Madison, OH. A Memorial Service will be immediately following at 5:00 p.m. across the street at the Madison Village Square where Rev. William Alvey will officiate with music by the Madison Jazz Project.

Contributions may be made to the Lake County Humane Society, 7564 E Tyler Blvd., Mentor, OH 44060 or Hospice of the Western Reserve, 17876 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland, OH 44110-2602 or St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital, P.O. Box 1000, Memphis, TN 38101-9908.