Andrew Anthony Bucci Jr.

Published 10:47 am Thursday, November 20, 2014

Andrew Anthony Bucci Jr.

Andrew Anthony Bucci Jr. of Vicksburg died Sunday, Nov. 16, 2014, at Hospice Ministries in Ridgeland after a brief illness. He was 92.

A memorial service will be announced by his family at a future date. Memorial donations may be made to Belhaven University Marie Hull Society for the Arts, 1500 Peachtree St., Jackson, MS 39202.

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Andrew spent most of his life in Maryland, where he worked for the U.S. Weather Bureau until his retirement. He also was a prominent visual artist and in recent years received Mississippi’s top awards for lifetime achievement in the arts. He had resettled in Vicksburg shortly before his death.

Andrew was born on Jan. 12, 1922 in Vicksburg. His family lived on First North Street and his father owned Bucci Brothers tailor shop on Washington Street. Andrew’s uncle was the late Tacito Bucci, a musician and long-time band director in local schools. After graduating from St. Aloysius High School, Andrew attended Louisiana State University and received a bachelor’s degree in architectural engineering.

After the outbreak of World War II, he was trained as a weather officer at New York University and served on air bases in England, Scotland and France.

In 1947, he enrolled in the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, earning a B.F.A. in 1951 and an M.F.A. in 1954.

Between degrees, he was called back into military service during the Korean War and served as a weather officer at Lockbourne AFB in Ohio. He retired from the military with the rank of major.

His painting of a magnolia flower appears on the 5-cent U.S. postage stamp issued in 1967 for the 150th anniversary of Mississippi statehood. In 1983, he was artist-in-residence for a semester at Delta State University.

Andrew was of the Roman Catholic faith.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Christine Cavallo Bucci and Andrew Bucci Sr. of Vicksburg, and two brothers, Don Bucci Sr. of Vicksburg and Dr. Robert Bucci of Canyon Lake, Texas.

He is survived by two sisters-in-law, Margaret Salmon Bucci and Joan Ahrendt Bucci; first cousin Marie Pantoliano; and nieces and nephews; Don Bucci Jr. and his wife Irene and children Veronica and Andrea, Phillip Bucci, Christine Bucci, Margaret Bucci, Carolyn Bucci Lindigrin and her son, John, Luke Bucci and wife Naniece, Laura Bucci Hardt and her husband David and children Joan and David Henry, Helen Bucci Schutz and her husband James and children, Derek and Christina Baxter, Beth Bucci Reynolds and her husband Ben, and son, Ben IV and his wife Shina, Drew Bucci and his wife Jackie and children, Brittney and Kara, Eric Bucci and his wife Sylvie, and children, Kayleigh and Andrew, Zachary Bucci and Lydia Dobbins, and Ben Bucci and his wife Dana.

He also had a family of good friends in Maryland, including Nell George, Kathleen and the late Frank Lacny, Bill and Kathy Thomas, Leonard and Joyce Caveny, the Rev. Peter Sweeney and others.