Of Revere. Passed away on Thursday, February 9th at the Lighthouse Nursing Care Center in Revere following a long and heroic battle with Alzheimer’s Disease. Born and raised in Revere, Barbara was the daughter of the late Tullio and Violet (Lilly), sister to the late Elizabeth (and late husband Anthony) Morico, the late Carol (and her husband Nicholas) Giammarino, the late Robert, and to Thomas (and his late wife Donna), or the “ones”, as she put it. She was the beloved aunt to many nieces and nephews (the “twos”); great-aunt to even more (the “threes”); and great-great aunt to several as well (the “fours”).
Barbara adored her family and was very much a second mother to her nieces and nephews, and grandmother to their children, hosting annual Halloween parties, Easter breakfasts, and dinner every Friday night for all who wanted to attend, as well as cheering them on at drum corps meets and sporting events. She put her family first and was always there for them.
After graduating in the top 7% of her class from Revere High School in 1958, Barbara’s career was spent at Chelsea Bottling Company in Chelsea, where she became the foreman. After retiring from Chelsea Bottle, the owner asked her to return until he could sell the business and retire himself. Although it was a tough physical job and her aching body needed a rest, she gave the company one more year because they needed her and she wouldn’t let them down.
Barbara was an exceptionally caring and kindhearted woman. She was the first one to offer help to those who needed it and would give you the shirt right off her back if you asked. Barbara loved sports and often lamented that other than girls’ basketball (in which she participated while in high school), sporting opportunities for girls were quite limited. With this in mind, Barbara became a manager, mentor, and coach to young girls on the Jazz softball team, of Revere Youth Softball (formerly St Mary’s). She thoroughly enjoyed coaching and she loved each of those girls. It was like hitting the lottery to be placed on her team. She devoted herself to “her girls” for twenty years of summers, and she ran a winter team for several years as well. She was a staple at the field even when her own team wasn’t playing.
In addition to sports, Barbara was fascinated with ancient Egypt and read everything she could get her hands on about it. She would have loved to have visited if she didn’t have to cross an ocean to get there. She also had a passion for elephants and amassed quite a collection of elephant figurines.
Barbara was feisty, opinionated and strong-willed to the core. She would fight for the little guy, the underdog, the oppressed, and would never back down from what she believed in. When given the devastating diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, she was determined to not only fight it, but to fight the stigma attached to diagnoses of the brain and mental health. She was never embarrassed by her illness and had no qualms about stating her diagnosis publicly.
Barbara was one of a kind. She loved and was loved by not only her family, but so many other people who she touched. She was Auntie to everyone who knew her, and will be so very missed.
Family and friends were invited to attend Visiting Hours on Tuesday, February 14th from the Vertuccio Smith & Vazza, Beechwood Home for Funerals, Revere. Her Funeral Service was held in the Funeral Home on Wednesday, followed by interment in Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Lighthouse Nursing Care Center/Resident Council Fund, 204 Proctor Ave, Revere 02151.