Longtime jockey agent Joe Verrone, affectionately known as “Little Joe”, passed away Monday, February 27 at the age of 93. Born in 1923 in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, Verrone was a staff sergeant in the Army, receiving the Purple Heart for combat wounds sustained during World War II. Upon his return home, Verrone went to work at the racetrack, first as a jockey and soon thereafter as a jockey’s agent. Verrone worked at numerous racetracks throughout the country representing riders for more than 60 years, among them Bill Hartack, Paul Kallai, Nick Santagata and Danny Nied.
He was predeceased by his wife, Rosemary Lee, who passed in 1984; as well as five brothers and a sister. Surviving are his sister, Rose, and many nieces and nephews.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 18 in his hometown of Johnstown.
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