Don Truscello was born in Toronto to Vincent and Mary Truscello (neé Capito) and died in TGH on March 23 after more than two years of stoically facing off against three cancers. Throughout his overwhelming challenges he remained positive, patient, and determined, always drinking from the glass half-full.

He is survived by his soulmate of 40 years, wife Brenda, his brother Tony (Val), sister Josie (Hal), in-laws Carrie (Dan) and Bill (Kim), their families, and his aunt Catherine.

After obtaining his Masters in English Literature at St. Mike’s UofT, he taught with the Scarborough Board of Ed. sharing his love of literature and the value of critical thinking. He coached hockey as well, a lifelong passion from his childhood days when he and Tony would watch the Leafs from the standing room area in the Gardens. After retiring, he played with Scarborough Sr’s for many years, relishing the friendships and change room quips until Covid hit. He watched the Leafs faithfully to the end, his delight in a good goal never waning.

He had a sharp wit and generous sense of humour. He read widely, with a profound intellectual curiosity. He was a dedicated TIFF member from its inception up to Covid, faithful to the archaic hard copy catalogue. Over the years, he wrote, played bridge, and skied, while fitting in Continuing Ed courses at St. Mike’s. He loved standardbred horses. He loved dogs, especially Toy Manchester Terriers. And he relished quiet time with choral and classical music (“Wouldn’t you just die for Mahler?”), and celebratory sipping of good vino. For years he enjoyed his volunteer job as dishwasher at St. Peter’s Winter Welcome Table.

Warm thanks to Dr. Keith Stewart @ PMH, to the dedicated care teams of the UHN, and to our wonderful, supportive families, friends and neighbours. A memorial mass will be held later.

To honour Don, any charity is perfect, he gave to many, or simply sip a half-full glass and remember him. Take the time to do what you love to do, he would say, “Take your time.”

Online condolences and memories may be sent to:



Burial / Entombment / Cremation


May 06, 2024
Fil Melo
Dear Brenda, My sympathies on the passing of your beloved Don. Such a wonderful human being. Grant him eternal rest o Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. Amen.🙏
April 21, 2024
Barbara Newman
Oh Mr. Truscello, How I remember my three English classes at Winston Churchill Collegiate, grades 12 & 13, with very very fond memories. You were a wonderful, kind, intelligent, caring and inspiring teacher to me. You taught me to debate, trust my perspectives, improve/enhance my listening skills and to analyze what I’m hearing to get to the essence of whom I’m communicating with. Thank you for all of these skills and abilities; they enabled me to become a compassionate, alert, caring human being. Over the years you have been referred to as my most memorable, impactful, and referenced high school teacher. Your life’s obituary is still teaching me who and what you are/were all about, a wonderful, kind, giving person. My deepest condolences to all your loved ones and the many many interactive lives you created and were a part of. They have all, including mine, been blessed with your essence of kindness and love. I shall forever appreciate you and keep you in my thoughts and heart. Barbara Newman Barbara Newman April 12, 2024
April 14, 2024
Oh Brenda I was so sorry to see this! Over the years I have often thought fondly of you and Don in your cozy little nest. What magical memories you will have for comfort. Know that I think of you often and remember our time together with great affection.. I an so very sorry for your loss. Don was a remarkable man.
April 14, 2024
Joanne Martino
I first met "Mr. Truscello" in September, 1972. He was teaching a newly created (by him) scholarship Grade 13 English class. We were 12 literature-loving young people blessed to be taught, guided, and inspired by Mr. Truscello's brilliance, passions, and penetrating insights. It has been decades, but I still remember the positive atmosphere in that classroom. It was warm, inviting, and ever so interesting. We had so many stimulating discussion Mr. Truscello's lessons were memorable. Yes, he introduced us to classic literature and beautiful poetry, but somehow managed to fit in significant life lessons too. Years later after earning my B.A. and B.Ed., I sought a teaching position. Mr. Truscello (then became Don) was Head of the English Dept. at that time. He was instrumental in helping me get my first teaching contract. Thank you, Don. That was a priceless gift that put me on the road to a 35 year teaching career that I loved. Over the years as colleagues and friends, we shared many interesting and enjoyable conversations. What a pleasure it has been to know this very fine man. I have not seen or spoken to Don in a very long time. It doesn't matter. Don and his good deeds are unforgettable and will long be remembered, appreciated, and respected. No amount of time can diminish his meaningful contribution to this world. To Brenda and Don's family, I'd like to leave them with some words of wisdom by William Wordsworth. I concluded my Grade 13 yearbook comments with the following quote. Don had commented to me back then how much he liked these words and the message: "We will grieve not, rather find strength in what remains behind." I hope all of the above offers some comfort at this difficult time. With heartfelt sympathy . . . Joanne Martino
April 13, 2024
Brett Lye
I am Brett Lye and I met Don when I first started to play old timers hockey. roughly 10 years ago. He and I were defense partners and I can't tell you how much I enjoyed playing with him and getting to know him. Don did not have an unkind bone in his body and he was so well liked by all of the hockey players. We stayed in touch after he was unable to play anymore and we shared stories about our families and talk about the Leafs and I would update him on any news with our hockey buddies. Don, you were a class act and I will miss you terribly so wherever you are, get some hockey going and I look forward to joining you on the other side!
April 13, 2024
Michael Barrett
I was fortunate to have been a student of Mr. Truscello in my last year of high school at Winston Churchill. I remember him with great affection and thankfulness for a year of exploration and challenge. He was not a usual teacher. He inspired us with dreams, stepped outside “normal” to expand our horizons and met each of us where we were. He may never have realized the seeds that he left on the pathway of our education that allowed us to grow, broaden and live life to its fullest. Thank you for sharing him with us.
April 13, 2024
Glenn Tarver
I was Don's colleague at Woburn late 60s. He was an excellent teacher. Then our careers took us on separate paths, different schools and fewer interactions. We both loved standardbred racehorses. We were co-owners for a while. Don and standardbred horses were similar - strong and brave in competition, calm and congenial otherwise. I still own horses and when I'm with them, I often think of Don and our years together.
April 13, 2024
Ron Bourdon
I played hockey with Don in Thornhill some years back. He was a defenseman on my Team Black. When I first met him, I had no idea who he was and how a guy would play wearing glasses. To my surprise and delight, I saw Don was one of the best players in our league. So patient and smart. He did "take his time" when playing He was a quiet, humble guy and I will always remember him. You see a guy once a week over the winter, but never really know much about that person. His obit says everything I thought he was. Rest in Peace, Don. You were well thought of by me and many others.
April 11, 2024
Brian Sambourne
I remember Don Truscello with much fondness and respect. To me, Don was a Renaissance man, gifted in the arts, teaching and athletics. His full participation in the wide offerings of life was truly commendable + remarkable. My sincere condolences to Brenda + all of Don's family for their loss. Don was a compassionate man with so many accomplishments.
April 09, 2024
Lori Issenman
Our deepest condolences to Brenda and family. The tribute to his legacy is beautifully and lovingly written. Lori and Bob Issenman.
April 09, 2024
Gale Floyd
I express my sincere condolences during this time of deep sorrow. I would like to share the Bible’s comforting hope of the promise that your loved one will live again on a beautiful earth when there will be no more death. (John 5:28, 29; Revelation 21:4)