NEWARK, N.J. - As the New Jersey Devils celebrated youth hockey across the state, they recognized three contributors to the growth of the sport. Ron and Peggy Del Mauro and Gene Palecco received the Dr. John J. McMullen Service Award on January 1 for their commitment to amateur hockey.
The Del Mauros are best known in the amateur hockey community for their leadership in the New Jersey Rockets organization. In collaboration with the New Jersey Devils and Atlantic Metropolitan Hockey League, they grew an association that offered players development on the ice and showed them how to be leaders in the community. Together, they supported players’ efforts as part of the Jersey Hockey Fights Hunger Program that seeked to address the needs of the hungry throughout the state with the Community Food Bank of New Jersey.
Gene Palecco is currently commissioner of the Atlantic Youth Hockey League and a USA Hockey director for the Atlantic District. Over the years, he has led the league and affiliate in efforts to grow the game and provide more opportunities for player advancement. He has supported associations in their work to provide players a well-rounded hockey development program.