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Peter Graham Delany, vice president and chief operating officer of Delany Products, passed away in his adopted home town of Charlottesville, Va., on July 22. Peter, died of a sudden artery blockage that lead to a massive heart attack. Peter was born in 1945 in Garden City, N.Y., the son of A. Graham and Melene Delany. He was a pillar of the new Delany Products and instrumental in the smooth and rapid transition from the direct manufacturing days of the old Coyne & Delany to the outsourcing model of today’s Delany Products.
Coyne & Delany was founded in 1879 by John J. Delany and Thomas Coyne. Peter was 4th generation from the founder. At its inception, the company made ball cocks and the copper lining for high tank toilets that functioned as the indoor plumbing of the 19th century. With the introduction of the Flushboy in 1927, the company started down the path of becoming one of the preeminent flush valve manufactures in the world.
It seemed from birth that joining the family business to help his father was Peter’s life-long dream. After graduation from the University of Pennsylvania, he served his country proudly as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army. He joined what was then Coyne & Delany in 1972 and spent his career working with his father Graham learning every facet of production of the Delany valve, perfecting what is today referred to as the Delany Differences.
Starting in 2009, Peter rose to the challenge of the transitioning from the direct manufacturing days of the old Coyne & Delany to the model of outsourcing parts while still assembling at the Charlottesville plant. Peter identified the best potential partners overseas, trained them to produce the valves to Delany’s demanding specifications and managed the myriad of production issues raised by offshore manufacturing.
Under his direction, Delany’s lead times to its customers shrank to averaging under eight days, an all-time low. He was also instrumental in the revamping and production of the entire product line. Recently he was key in the launch of several products such as the Saber valve, Flushboy Ultra and the just launched TrueSense, a low power in-wall flush valve. Together with his brothers A. Graham, Jr. “Biff” Delany vice president, customer service and Scott Delany, president, Peter was helping to lead the resurgence of the new Delany Products.
In 1982, he married his wonderful wife, Grenelle. Living in Charlottesville their entire married life, together they raised two children, Gray Delany of Richmond, Va. and Charlotte, a student at UVA. Peter, Grenelle and family continued for many years to spend summer vacations at the family home in East Hampton, N.Y.
The family suggests that in lieu of flowers please make a donation in Peter’s name to the Alzheimer’s Association.