LANSDALE — The cars wrapped around Lansdale Avenue and Saint Stanislaus Roman Catholic Church Tuesday night. The line was well out the door before the scheduled viewing of Lansdale native Daniel J. Algeo. The overwhelming attendance for the 49 year-old teacher, football coach and family man displayed how beloved he was.
Algeo, the head coach for Cardinal O'Hara football, died last Thursday morning after suffering a heart attack last Monday night. He is one of Jim and Mickey Algeo's nine children. Danny followed in his father's footsteps and coached at Lansdale Catholic among other stops before his 10 years with the Lions.
People from all of the stops along the way came out to support the Algeo family. Constant kind words of the man were vocalized on social media and at St. Stan's, where an addition viewing is scheduled for 9-11 a.m. Wednesday with the funeral at 11 a.m.
Different athletic polos were donned by many and it was clear Algeo's passion for football and love to teaching branched out further than you could fathom. Bonner-Prendergast head football coach Greg Bernhardt came with his staff and several players to pay their respects.
"It is kind of unique because we are such rival schools, but forget about football,' Bernhardt said. "He was just a great guy. I'm here to show my support.'
Bernhardt was a part of Algeo's staff at O'Hara for three seasons before returning to his alma mater to lead the Friars for the past three seasons. Bernhardt picked up a lot of valuable information from Algeo — some on the field and some off. Most importantly, Bernhardt picked up a dear friend.
Bonner was not the only Philadelphia Catholic League school saying its goodbyes to a gridiron rival and offseason friend. Football was a constant in Algeo's life and it allowed him to constantly connect with young men and fellow coaches. Algeo's gameplan directly correlated with real life issues.
"I coached with him for ' 04-to-'06 and we became friends,' Bernhardt said. "The big thing I always took away from him is it is not about football. It is about preparing these kids for life.'
Groups from his high school days also came to spread love and support to the Algeo family. Even in high school Danny (Lansdale Catholic Class of 1984) was destined to follow in his father's footsteps.
"I went to all of high school and grade school with him,' LC Class of 1983 and North Wales resident Susan Maleski said. "I was a cheerleader and he was a football player. We have some great stories. I did not know everything, but I knew he would follow in his dad's footsteps.'
Coach Danny Algeo was destined to change lives. By the turnout on Tuesday, it was quite evident he did. The Lansdale football lansdscape will never be the same. But the coaches's mark certainly was made.
Follow staff writer Andrew Marcus on Twitter @amarcus515.