Weather Forecast




Albert J. Amatuzio passed away Saturday, April 1, 2017 in his home, with his family by his side,.

Al was born on May 6, 1924 in Duluth, to Margret and Albert Amatuzio.

As a child growing up on Raleigh Street, Al's entrepreneurial nature emerged. He peddled newspapers, sold magazines, collected scrap iron and devised any number of ventures to help support the family through difficult times.

But Al's real love was flying. He would wait each day near the old Carbolite plant to watch the white Sikorsky mail plane fly overhead on its way to touch down on the St. Louis Bay. He would wave to the pilot and dream of the day when he, too, could take to the air. His dream was realized when, at age 12, his father bought him a one-dollar ticket for a short ride in a Piper Cub. Al's dream became ambition.

After graduation from Denfeld High School in 1942, Al attended Naval Air Corps training. But just as he was making his mark as a trainee pilot the Navy announced it had overestimated its need for pilots and closed the program. Al was disappointed and not interested in another type of Navy career, so he joined the Merchant Marine. It was aboard the SS Fisk Victory that he survived the great Okinawa storm that sent 42 ships to the ocean floor.

After the war, and eager to renew his pilot training, Al joined the Air Force, now recently separated from the Army and reorganized into its own distinct branch of the armed forces. He was a natural and made a profound impression on his instructors. Al earned his wings, then fate pulled him in another direction. His mother became ill, and he had to leave the service to run the family-owned Gitchinadji Supper Club.

Still burning with desire to fly, Al joined the Duluth unit of the Air National Guard. He served 25 years as a fighter pilot and squadron commander and was twice honored as our nation's top pilot by winning the prestigious William Tell Air-to-Air Shootout Competition and the Earl T. Rick Competitive Shootout.

Al then became inspired by a new challenge. Armed with the knowledge that every jet engine in the world could survive only with synthetic oil, he reasoned that the same performance benefits could be applied to cars, trucks and other motorized land vehicles.

Al ignored the skeptics and in 1963 began an intense period of research and development. By 1966 he had formulated his first synthetic motor oil, and throughout the sixties he continued development and sold synthetic oils under a variety of names. In 1972, AMSOIL synthetic motor oil became the world's first synthetic motor oil to meet American Petroleum Institute service requirements. Al Amatuzio had single handedly changed the entire automotive lubricant industry, even though it was unknown to the petroleum and automotive industry at the time. Falling back on his Raleigh Street instincts and military training, he fought major corporations like Pennzoil and Amway in multi-year lawsuits. They tried to squash AMSOIL before it got started. They soon found out the fighting tenacity of Al Amatuzio when he beat them all. Today, every oil company in America has synthetic oil due exclusively to the struggle and success of Al Amatuzio. Al used to joke about the disbelievers "they all thought I was at altitude too long without oxygen". In February 1994, Al was formally recognized and honored as the pioneer of synthetic lubrication with his induction into the Lubricant's World Hall of Fame.

Despite numerous offers to relocate his company, Al remained loyal to the Twin Ports. His support of local projects and events, including AMSOIL Arena, Albert J Amatuzio Veterans Memorial Hall, AMSOIL Duluth National Snocross and AMSOIL Northland Law Enforcement K-9 Foundation, One Amsioil Center, Superior, reflect his firm commitment.

Al was generous in all respects and had particular compassion for children, animals and military causes. He touched the lives of many and will be missed by family, friends, hundreds of loyal AMSOIL employees and hundreds of thousands loyal AMSOIL Dealers.

Al was preceded in death by Albert Amatuzio (father), Margret Erickson (mother); siblings, Donald Amatuzio and Dolly Johnson.

Al is survived by his daughters, Lorry Amatuzio and Lyn Amatuzio; sons, Dan (Jolene) Amatuzio and Alan (Gina) Amatuzio; grandchildren, Carli Amatuzio, Daniel Amatuzio, Margo Amatuzio, Albert John "AJ" Amatuzio II, Bryce Carlson and Brody Carlson; sister Antoinette "Tutz" Sand; brother, Richard (Liz) Amatuzio and many nieces and nephews.

GATHERING OF FAMILY AND FRIENDS: 12 Noon until the 1 p.m. service on Saturday, April 15, in the DECC Auditorium, 325 Harbor Drive, Duluth. Military honors accorded by the Duluth Honor Guard will follow.

In lieu of flowers, memorials are preferred and may be directed to Amsoil Northland Law Enforcement K9 Foundation,, Animal Allies, 4006 Airport Rd., Duluth, MN 55811 or Douglas County Humane Society, PO Box 891, Superior, WI 54880.

Arrangements by Dougherty Funeral Home, Duluth, (218) 727-3555.

Sign the Guestbook

Read Guestbook Entries

We will miss our neighbor across the bay on Lake Millecent!! Al was always a very friendly and helpful person.
You are missed
To Lorry " Lyn Fan & Alan Growing up in Kenwood, I knew all of you. Losing a Loved one is not easy. l got to hear your father speak years ago. He was great. May God Bless each one of you. May he rest in peace.
My sincere condolences to your family. Mr. Amatuzio was a genuine inspiration to myself and many. His work ethic was remarkable. ~Melanie
What a joy it was to attend many AMSOIL University training events and always having a short chat with AJ. We will miss him. Our thoughts & Prayers are with the Amatuzio Family.
The Amatuzio family were our neighbors. I knew and admired Al - He was good people. Al, friends never say bye cuz bye is forever later is better - take care
As both a great squadron commander and pilot, Al earned my respect and friendship as we flew many missions together over 20 plus years. I am truly thankful to have known and flown with Al.
Lori, Lyn, and Danny, my condolences to all of you for the loss of your father. I remember him well, and your mom, from the days when I babysat you when you lived on Chambersburg. Alot of great memories of you all every time I go by that house.
My hearts go out to friends and family of this wonderful man. I worked for him for almost 10 years and I've never met such a wonderful person. It's a great loss to have lost someone so wonderul
Al was a great friend of my father and my family, he will be sorely missed. Our prayers go out to his family at this sad time. May he rest in peace and may you all find comfort in sharing memories of a life so well lived. We have made a donation in his name to the Douglas County Humane Society. Love to all, Keith & Kelli Colalillo and Jane Aho (Al Colalillo)
I first met Lt. Col. Amatuzio July 1970. I still consider him to be one of the finest persons I have ever known. Thank you for the Amsoil opportunity.
RIP, Al.
Al was a GREAT man! I am 81 and have been a dealer since 1980. I have enjoyed the ride.