The Missouri State University family mourns the death of Dr. Ronald Del Vecchio, dean of the Darr College of Agriculture, who passed away April 4, 2022.
Under Del Vecchio’s leadership, the college added academic programs, earned $10.4 million in grants, constructed an agriculture magnet school, and more. He oversaw the naming transition from the Darr School of Agriculture to the Darr College of Agriculture in 2017.
During his tenure, the college also received an 80-acre land donation from the Kindrick family, which provides students and faculty the opportunity to conduct research in crop production.
Missouri State Provost Dr. Frank Einhellig said Del Vecchio has been a valued member of the MSU family since August 2016 when he took on the leadership role of the college.
“He was a strong, yet humble individual who led with integrity and was respected by all who were fortunate to work and interact with him. We’ll miss him dearly, and we offer our deepest sympathies to his family and loved ones,” Einhellig added.
Del Vecchio was the first person in his family to attend and graduate from college.
“I like to think that I was able to set an example for my younger family members,” he wrote in 2020. “Since I broke the ice, many of my nieces and nephews have attended or are attending college and are doing well. I get phone calls from them on occasion, asking for advice.
“I like to think that I helped or inspired them in some way.”
Before coming to Missouri State, Del Vecchio served as a professor and was the department head of the agriculture and natural resources department at the University of Minnesota-Crookson.
He earned his doctorate and master’s degrees from Texas A&M University in animal science. He earned his bachelor’s degree in animal and veterinary science at the University of Rhode Island.