BREAKING: Brother of Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda dies in Boca Raton crash


The brother of famed Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda died when his car turned into the path of a Boca Raton police SUV, authorities said Friday morning.

At about 8:30 p.m. Thursday, a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office report says, Joseph Lasorda, 83, who lived in Boca Raton, was driving north on Military Trail near Potomac Road when he turned left in front of an unmarked Chevrolet Traverse driven by city police Sgt. Doug Immler, 30.

The report said the collision sent the police SUV crashing into a 2018 Nissan Maxima. 

Lasorda was taken to Delray Medical Center, where he later died a short time later.

The crash happened in the city, but Boca Raton police asked the sheriff’s office to investigate, sheriff’s spokeswoman Teri Barbera said.  

A determination of which driver was at fault could take months.

Immler was taken to Boca Raton Regional Hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries. He has been released, and by department policy, is on paid adminsitrative leave, city police spokesman Mark Economou said Friday. He said the SUV was heavily damaged. 

 Immler is the son of retired Boynton Beach police chief Matt Immler. According to Boca Raton records, he joined the department in August 2008.

The driver of the third vehicle, 58-year-old David Powers of suburban Boca Raton, was unhurt, the report said.

Joseph Lasorda “was personality-plus. He was a friend to everyone,” Lasorda’s wife of 32 years, Gaetana Lasorda, said Friday morning.

For the past seven years, she said, the couple has lived at the Colonnade neighborhood, near Yamato and Jog roads. She said her husband was “the mayor” of the neighborhood.

Joseph Lasorda was one of five brothers who grew up in the Philadelphia suburb of Norristown, Pa., his wife said. For three decades, she said, Joseph owned Lasorda’s Pizzeria in Exeter.

According to news reports, in 1983, his then-wife Irene, 44, and her 64-year-old mother died when their car went off a highway and into a canal in Chester County, Pa. 

Gaetana Lasorda said her husband retired from the pizzeria two decades ago and the couple moved a few years after that to Boca Raton.

“He did all the cooking after he retired,” said his wife, who is a sales representative for a national skin-care firm.

Joseph Lasorda is survived by a son and a daughter and one grandchildren.  Services are tentatively set for next week at St. Patrick Church in Norristown.

Tommy Lasorda, now 90, managed the Dodgers for 21 years, winning 1,599 games and notching four National League pennants and two World Series championships. He retired in 1996 and went into the Baseball Hall of Fame the following year, his first year of eligibility.


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