Anthony James Adinolfi, Jr., of Wake Forest, NC passed away on December 6, 2017 following a long illness. Loving kindness, compassion and a passionate commitment to quality healthcare for all define Tony’s life. As a daily practitioner of meditation, he cultivated an awareness of the suffering and needs of others that sustained his motivation to serve others and that inspired many family, friends and colleagues to follow his example. His adventurous life included participating in the historic Woodstock Music Festival that defined the culmination of the 1960s and attending countless concerts of the rock and roll greats.
Tony was the first of six children of Anthony and Helen Adinolfi and he was born in South Norwalk, CT. He graduated from Roger Ludlowe High School in Fairfield, CT. He was proud to be the recipient of the Problems in American Democracy Award while in high school. He earned an Associate of Science in Nursing at Norwalk Community College and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master of Science in Nursing and a Nurse Practitioner degree at the Duke University School of Nursing. While proud of his degrees from both UNC and Duke, when asked about his allegiance he was quick to respond, “Go HEELS!”
With the onset of the AIDS/HIV crisis, Tony played an integral role in the establishment of the Triangle Aids Services Organization and the first HIV clinic at Duke University Medical Center. There he supported many patients and families as they coped with this devastating disease. At the time, many healthcare providers were so fearful that they would not treat these patients. While a clinician at Duke and Assistant Clinical Professor at the Duke University School of Nursing he worked with others to open the AIDS outreach clinic in Henderson, NC where he also treated patients. Tony taught in the Duke Nursing School Master of Science in Nursing program where he was selected as the school’s teacher of the year in 1999. From 1983 to 1986 he volunteered to assist AIDS patients as part of the Lesbian and Gay Health Project. He was proud to serve for many years on the HIV community advisory board and to moderate the annual review of progress in treating this disease. He also served as a Medical Science Liaison with Bristol-Myers Squibb.
Most recently Tony retired as Senior Science Manager for Astellas Pharmaceuticals based in Northbrook, IL. There he supported physicians and other healthcare providers in understanding the effective use of pharmaceuticals and in supporting research projects to advance new therapies in treatment for fungal diseases. He also served as an emergency room nurse at the UNC Trauma Center; a prison and cardiac ICU nurse during a brief time in South Carolina; and a nurse practitioner at the Durham Health Department.
Tony is survived by his husband and partner of 38 years Tony Habit. Also by his loving brothers and sisters: Jacqueline Adinolfi of Forney, TX, David W. Adinolfi (Clara Ford Adinolfi) of Eden Prairie, MN; James W. Adinolfi (Jo Wong Adinolfi) of Shelton, CT; Thomas E. Adinolfi (Karen Cerreta) of Chester, NJ; and Susan Stonoha (Joseph) of Fairfield, CT. He also adored and was adored by his eleven nieces and nephews.
A celebration of Tony’s life will be hosted at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, December 16 at the Duke University School of Nursing on Trent Drive in Durham. A reception on site will follow the service in the lobby. In lieu of flowers contributions to a charity of one’s choosing or to any of the following: Doctors Without Borders, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Human Rights Campaign Fund or Equality NC.