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by Terri Hogan
Senior Staff Writer
Olney community leader Gregory Intoccia died suddenly on May 25 at the age of 62.
According to his wife, Mary, he suffered a heart attack while running at Lake Needwood.
He was found by a passer-by who called 911 and started CPR.
Mary Intoccia became worried when Greg did not return home and called his cell phone, which was answered by the hospital. She said doctors believe he died before he hit the ground.
“He was seeing a cardiologist because his mother had a quadruple bypass at his age, but he had no heart trouble and was doing everything right — he ran a lot, exercised, ate well and was healthy. We are just heartbroken.”
Mary Intoccia, who was married to Greg for 39 years, said her husband loved to serve people and thought everyone should serve others.
“That is why he did the things he did in this community,” she said.
Intoccia served as president of the Greater Olney Civic Association (GOCA) from 2015 to 2018. He began his involvement with GOCA in 2010 as a representative of his community, Ashley Hollow, and continued to be involved after his presidency ended.
“I thoroughly enjoy public service,” Intoccia said during a 2016 interview with The Greater Olney News. “That is why I served the nation and that is why I serve my community. I genuinely enjoy the people I work with, and the type of work that makes a difference in the lives of people gives me a great sense of pleasure and accomplishment.”
While serving as GOCA’s executive vice president in 2015, Intoccia stepped up to lead the organization when then-president John Webster resigned.
“I was shocked and deeply saddened to learn of his sudden passing,” Webster said of Intoccia. “Greg was one of the finest human beings I have had the privilege of working with and he was a pillar of support for me and the GOCA organization during our tenure together. Greg was more than a colleague to me; he was also a friend I could lean on and confide in when I faced personal difficulties. I treasure the friendship we shared and pray for the repose of Greg’s soul and for his surviving family members.”
Barbara Falcigno, past GOCA president, said Intoccia was the right person to take the helm of GOCA at that time.
“He stepped into the position of president at a turbulent time for the organization and he calmed people down and moved things forward in a productive way,” she said. “That was his way — quiet but strong. As a detail oriented person, he would be sure we considered all the facts as well as different viewpoints so that GOCA was making the best decision for the community. Not only will I miss him, the entire community will miss him.”
Current GOCA President Matt Quinn said he met Greg Intoccia through GOCA almost 10 years ago.
“I would not have become president without Greg’s support,” Quinn said. “Over the years we spoke many times and our five-minute phone calls frequently turned into one-and-a-half-hour calls. He was smart, kind, thoughtful and always thinking about what was best for Olney. Clearly the pain his family is going through is profound. But I will miss his wisdom and friendship terribly.”
Quinn said that GOCA is planning to devote a portion of its June 11 meeting to allow people to share memories about Intoccia and to discuss a way to honor his legacy, possibly through an internship program.
Intoccia also served on and chaired the Mid-County Citizens Advisory Board.
In addition to Mary, who is a teacher at Brooke Grove Elementary School, Intoccia is survived by daughters Christie, Lisa and Laura.
As part of her father’s eulogy, Lisa wrote, “It makes sense you passed over Memorial Day weekend because you were a true patriot who loved, above all things, God, our family and serving this country and our community. You have influenced my life in so many ways and you’ll always be my hero. You were truly a man of God, filled with so much wisdom and love.
“You were always so stubborn and set in your ways (probably where I got it from), but I was always so confounded with the advice you would give to me about handling different situations. I loved your patience and inherent ability to listen. You were easily able to absorb and offer a point of view based on quiet, measured wisdom. Your core values to always keep promises, honor commitment and embrace integrity, along with your usual advice to always turn to God and put my faith above everything else, has shaped my life and helped me grow into who I am today.”
Laura said her father was the most loving, intelligent, hard-working man she has ever
“My dad was a busy man, in constant motion, but never too busy to share his love of life with those around him,” she wrote. “This man has left a permanent mark on my mind, heart and soul. I am so proud to be able to call him my father. There are no words to describe the love he had for my family. My dad not only was a gentle, fun-loving soul, but he also carried the passion to serve and love our country. My father instilled in us a core value that defined who he was. And that was a man who kept promises. He honored commitment and was a man of integrity. To me, Dad’s finest quality was his patience, an inherent ability to listen. To absorb and offer a point of view based on quiet, measured wisdom.”
Intoccia was born Aug. 24, 1956, and grew up in Montgomery County, Pa.
He graduated from the United States Air Force Academy with a Bachelor of Science degree in international affairs in 1978, a Master of Arts degree in political science from Wichita State University in 1981, a juris doctor degree from the University of Denver College of Law in 1985, and a Ph.D. from the University of Missouri-St. Louis in 1998.
He served in the Air Force as an active duty officer and as a judge advocate for the Department of Defense. He went on from active duty to continue his career in the Reserves while working at the Federal Communications Commission.
Intoccia was recalled to active duty in support of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, serving in the office of the Secretary of Defense. He spent 36 years between federal civil service, military, private law and in-house corporate environments with expertise in cybersecurity, telecommunications and national security.
He was an accomplished writer with many publications of note on legal and policy subjects.
A Mass of Christian Burial was offered at St. Peter’s Catholic Church on June 1. He will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery with full m
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