Joseph Conace is a proud member of “Our Greatest Generation”, born in the 20’s, raised in
the 30’s, served our country in 40’s, then spent his life working to make this country a better place. Along the way Joe, like many others of his age, realized the value of athletics in the total development of one’s maturity. Joe Canace was a three sport athlete at Nyack High School, he lettered in wrestling, baseball, and football. On the mat, Joe was a fierce competitor, and on the baseball team he was known as a terrific clutch hitter, but Joe’s forte was football. Joe was a tackle on Nyack High School’s varsity football team and in 1940 was voted 1st team All Rockland County at that position. The Journal News cited Joe as the reason for Nyack’s late season surge to a final position of 2nd place inthe P.S.A.L. in 1940, calling him one of the “sturdiest linemen Nyack has ever seen”. Playing both offense and defense, it was said that when Joe tackles someone, “he tackles them for keeps!” Joe’s biggest thrill was in his senior year, against rival Haverstraw High School when he scooped up a fumble on Haverstraw’s twelve yard line and returned it for a touchdown. Nyack went on to win that game 7-6 on the strength of Joe’s touchdown. Joe was agreat student at Nyack High School as well as a great athlete. He was an American Legion Award winner, a member of the National Honor Society, a participant at Boys State and theclass president. After graduation from high school, Joe entered the army in 1943. He was a member the 35th Division of the 134 Infantry Regiment Company and served in the European theater.
Joe was promoted to Sergeant in the field while serving in France and was wounded in 1944.
Before his Honorable Discharge in 1946, Joe earned the following medals; Combat Infantry
Badge, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Conspicuous Service, Good Conduct, World War II Victory, and the Diplome Republique Francaise. Back home in Nyack, Joe went to work for New York Telephone Nynex in March of 1947. Joe continued to stay active in athletics, playingsoftball in Rockland County. While playing for Aero Mufflers in the Piermont Softball League, Joe went 5-5 with 3 runs scored in a victory over Gair Office. That 5-5 day ran his league leading streak to 11 hits in a row. Joe retired from New York Telephone in 1984 after 34 years of service to the company.
As a tribute to Joe’s prominence as a Nyack personality, in 2005 he was selected as the
Grand Marshall of the Nyack Memorial Day Parade. He was married to Victorine, who has
since passed away, and raised two children, Angela (Weygant) and Anthony. Joe currently
resides in West Nyack.