Cover photo for Thomas Charles DiFiglio's Obituary

Thomas Charles DiFiglio

January 5, 1952 — June 9, 2024

Charleston, SC

Thomas Charles DiFiglio

Thomas Charles (Tom) DiFiglio, age 72 of Charleston, South Carolina, passed away peacefully at his home on Sunday, June 9, 2024, after a 5-year battle with cancer.


Born on January 5, 1952, in Brooklyn, NY, Tom was the son of Frank DiFiglio and Santina D'Angelo DiFiglio.

As a young boy Tom liked to watch sports on TV, and as soon as he was old enough to ride the subways would go to various New York team sporting events, eventually becoming an ardent Mets fan. He was also an altar boy, and many times would be up early in the morning to be at 6:15 Mass. After moving to Charleston, Tom found his way by getting involved with music. He was the lead singer for several bands, most notably the band he founded, the Bay Street Extension.


He received his bachelor’s in education from the University of South Carolina. While there, Tom was the Concert Chairman for the university and brought in many now-famous musicians. Tom received his master’s in education at the College of Charleston and taught briefly in Charleston before opening an International Fitness Center. He brought in Lou Ferrigno for the grand opening and later had a surprise visit from Strom Thurmond, who wanted a tour of the facility.  Tom then moved to Florida and started the first Nautilus Fitness Center in Palm Beach County. He dabbled with stand-up comedy and at one point was Burt Reynolds' double on the TV show B.L. Stryker. He soon returned to his educational career and was very involved in the Advanced Placement Program. Tom spent most of his 39-year teaching career at Spanish River High School in Boca Raton FL, where he taught AP Psychology and was interviewed by various local, state, and national newspapers, and magazines because of his students' consistently high AP scores. Tom was loved and respected by his students and fellow teachers and left his mark on all of them. He loved hiking and spending his summers in Beech Mountain, NC.  After coming back to Charleston and being diagnosed with cancer, he kept himself occupied by writing letters to the Post and Courier.


Tom was preceded in death by his parents, Frank and Santina DiFiglio.  


He is survived by his sister, Christine Braddock (Derry), a nephew, Jason Braddock, a niece, Jennifer Braddock, a great-niece, Harper Rose Lofberg Braddock, an aunt, uncles, many cousins, and a multitude of dear friends.


The family extends a heartfelt thank you to Dr. William Maguire for his years of dedicated concern and support, and to the staff of Wren Hospice for their kindness and loving care of Tom. 


A graveside service will be held on Saturday, June 15, 2024, at 11 am at Holy Cross Cemetery, 604 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412.


A Celebration of Life Service will be held at a later date in South Florida.


In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to The American Cancer Society, or a charity of your choice in Tom’s name.


Expressions of sympathy may be viewed or submitted online at

Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to McAlister-Smith Funeral and Cremation, 347 Folly Rd, Charleston, SC 29412, 843-614-8494.


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Thomas Charles DiFiglio, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Graveside Service

Saturday, June 15, 2024

11:00 - 11:45 am (Eastern time)

A graveside service will be held on Saturday, June 15, 2024, at 11 am at Holy Cross Cemetery, 604 Fort Johnson Road, Charleston, SC 29412.

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