Lucille Spalletta
Lucille Spalletta
Lucille Spalletta
Lucille Spalletta

Obituary of Lucille Spalletta

On  June 4, 2017,   Lucille Spalletta passed away at home, surrounded by the love and presence of her family. Born on April 1, 1927, Lucille (Lu) was one of seven children of Carmella and Vincent Angrisane. Tiny in stature, she was mighty in her beliefs and determination.   Family, faith and tradition were the guiding forces in her life.

Her first job as a young teenager during World War II was working in a coffee shop in Newark Penn Station. She loved recounting stories about the dignitaries and famous actors of that era passing through what was, at that time, a hub of travel and activity for the Metropolitan area.  After graduating from Drake’s Business College, she worked as an Executive Secretary to the President of Pratt’s Dog Food.  In 1947, she met and married the love of her life, Anthony (Tony) Spalletta, an accomplished musician with whom she shared a love of music. She was a devoted, stay at home mother to her three children, returning to the workforce when they were in college, working in the advertising department of the Nutley Sun Newspaper.

Her love and devotion to her children and grandchildren, and to her many nieces and nephews made her a constant and steady source for advice and counsel. Anyone with a concern could call her and be sure to have her full attention and come away with encouragement and, many times, a clear direction.

Throughout her life, she preserved and carried on all the traditions of her family and her husband’s family, teaching and sharing those traditions and sacred family recipes with younger generations. As one of the youngest in both families, she moved up to become the true matriarch in her later years.

She was a loyal and devoted friend throughout her life. For the 30 years she lived in Belleville, her kitchen was the hub of activity with daily “coffee clutches” and her backyard was the setting for summer barbecues for the neighborhood.  Once she and her husband retired and moved to Toms River, she continued her social activities with lifelong friends, her siblings and new friends. She loved to travel and enjoyed cruises with her husband and friends. Sadly, she lost her soul mate, her husband in 1992.

Her Christian faith was a big part of her life. She was a member of St. Peter’s Church in Belleville and St. Joseph’s Church in Toms River where she was active in the Rosary Society.  She participated in and helped organize countless Christmas Bazaars and craft fundraisers for the church. She volunteered at Community Hospital in Toms River and was active in the community Senior Citizen’s organizations. Once she moved to Rockaway, she became a member of St. Cecilia’s Church.

She was an accomplished and very talented seamstress, making dresses, coats, draperies, slipcovers and many other household items.  She delighted in making Halloween costumes for her granddaughters. She designed and knitted newborn outfits for family members and for her many friends. Choosing textiles and yarn, and modifying patterns to create her own vision brought her great joy.

Lucille is survived by her loving children, Carol Terzo and her husband Thomas of Rockaway, Charles Spalletta and his wife Joan of Herndon, VA, and Dr. Robert Spalletta and his wife Patricia of Scranton, PA.   She is also survived by her cherished grandchildren Sarah and Nora Terzo, Ron Spalletta and his wife Amy, Olivia Spalletta, Paul Spalletta and his fiancé Allison, Brandon Spalletta and his wife Ashley, Adam Spalletta, and Christopher Gaughf and his wife Cheyenna, and by her great-grandchildren Atlas Young, Evangeline, Arabella, Eliana, and Christopher Gaughf, Jr.  She is also survived by her cherished brother Andrew Angrisane and his wife Florence of Florida and by numerous loving nieces, nephews and extended family.

She loved socializing, cooking, baking and sharing stories and advice. She had a charming wit and made everyone around her feel included and loved at all times. She had the capacity to find and celebrate the unique goodness in everyone she met. Throughout her life, she maintained an inner strength and dignity that carried her through difficult times. She leaves us with an enduring example of strength, faith and love.

Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Friday, June 9th at 10 am at St. Cecilia’s RC Church, 90 Church St., Rockaway, NJ. Burial will follow at St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Toms River. Public Visitation will take place on Thursday, June 8th from 4:00 – 8:00 pm at Norman Dean Home for Services, 16 Righter Ave., Denville. Please leave a condolence and special memory for her family.