February 8, 2019
Former Pirate Pitcher / Pirate Announcer
February 15, 2019
Director of the Pittsburgh-based Veterans Breakfast Club
With the birth of his first daughter in 1996, Todd DePastino became a stay-at-home dad, teaching in the evenings at Penn State, Beaver, and Waynesburg Colleges while finishing his Ph.D. He then revised his dissertation on the history of homelessness into a book, for which he won a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship. The result was “Citizen Hobo: How a Century of Homelessness Shaped America”.
After editing, annotating, and introducing the lost classic, “The Road” by Jack London, DePastino plunged into his Bill Mauldin research. Bill Mauldin, as many of you must know, was the WWII draftee who drew the hilarious cartoons that depicted the life of the dogface in the trenches. Todd’s book, “Bill Mauldin: A Life Up Front” received strong reviews, was an Eisner Award finalist, and won the Sperber Prize for the best biography of a major media figure. His award-winning double-volume collection of Mauldin’s World War II cartoons, “Willie & Joe: The WWII Years”, was followed in 2011 by “Willie & Joe: Back Home”, which covers the Post- War years, 1945-1946. “Commissioned in Battle: A Combat Infantryman in the Pacific”, co-authored by Jay Gruenfled, was released by Hellgate Press in early 2012.
But perhaps DePastino is better known to many of us veterans in the Senior Men’s Club as the Director of the Pittsburgh-based Veterans Business Club. For several years he has sponsored breakfast talks at a number of locations around the city and has encouraged veterans to tell their fascinating experiences during military service. Some are funny, some harrowing, some have been downright scary; they have always been interesting.
A graduate of Mt. Lebanon High School, he earned a BA in History from Boston College, and an MA and Ph.D. in American History from Yale University.
Try not to miss this one. It promises to be fascinating.