Virginia Montozzi, 95, of Villa Maria, formerly of Wampum passed away the morning of Monday, August 27, 2018 at her residence with family at her side. She had been in good health until suffering a stroke on August 2.
Born September 6, 1922 in Wampum, she was the daughter of the late Guido and Anna Leopardo Montozzi.
Virginia graduated from Wampum High School and then received an Associate Degree from Garfield Business Institute of Beaver Falls. She was a Sales Correspondent for Babcock & Wilcox Co in Beaver Falls. She also worked as an accountant for the McGuire Memorial Home in New Brighton. Virginia was active in church and community programs. She was a former member of Queen of Heaven and Holy Redeemer Parishes. Currently she was a member of St. James the Apostle Church. Virginia had been President of the Diocesan Council of Catholic Women and President of the Lawrence County Deanery of Catholic Women. She also had served on the Lawrence County Catholic Charities Board.
Survivors are one brother, Eugene Montozzi of Villa Maria, his children and numerous close cousins.
In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by two brothers Edmund Montozzi in 1924 and Dr. Richard Montozzi in 2010.
Visiting hours will be held on Friday August 31 from 4-7 pm at the Marshall Funeral Home 341 Main Street Wampum.
Friends may also pay their respects on Saturday from 10 am until the time of the Mass of Christian Burial at 11 am at St. James the Apostle Church. Rev. Father James Downs will officiate. Entombment will follow in Holy Redeemer Cemetery.
Memorial Contributions may be made to St. James the Apostle Parish or Sisters of the Humility of Mary.
Online condolences may be sent to marshallsfh.com.
This morning I heard that Virginia Montozzi passed away on Monday, August 27th. I am never ready for those calls when people that you know and care about leave this world. She would have been 96 on September 6th. She was about 15 months older than my Mother. They were second cousins; their Father’s were born in a small town in the Marche region of Italy called Force. A hillside village not far from the Adriatic Coast where their Father made a living probably making copper caldrons like generations had in the past for a thousand years.
Virginia and Evelyn’s Fathers’s left for America along with my Mom’s uncle in the first couple of decades of the twentieth century to become a shoemaker, mill worker and a tailor. When they arrived in America they boarded with the Lepardo’s in the village of Chewton. The Lepardos had two daughters Annie and Rose. Virginia’s Dad, Guido, married Annie and my Mom’s Uncle Joe married Rose. They lived a couple houses down from each other in Wampum. Annie and Rose passed away in the 1990’s…Virginia’s Dad had passed away in the early 1950’s.
My Mom and Virginia were close growing up…cousins and friends…they did all the things that girls do…sleep overs, double dating, talking about boys and dreaming about their futures. They were close but when my Mom married they didn’t do as much together. They still visited on Sundays and there were family gatherings, but life changed for both of them. Virginia took another path in life that gave her a great career and did many things that woman of her era never had the opportunity to accomplish. She worked in sales in the steel mills and was paid a ‘man’s wage’….’same work same pay’ she would always say. She did a lot with her life…career, active in church, family and community activities….she was always full of life. My Mom would always comment how much she liked Virginia…and Virginia would tell me the same about my Mom.
As they aged, occasionally, they would visit each. I remember how sad Virginia was when my Mom passed away in 2009. Virginia and I had talked about visiting each other…but it never really happened until I had retired from work about five years ago. I used to meet her for dinner and then pick her up for dinner when she stopped driving. I had the privilege of hearing her speak about our family history, her life, her thoughts…about things that she still dreamed about. She always said, that she would like to live another thirty years to see how the world would continue to change…she never feared changed…she found it interesting. She knew how to make each day an adventure…she would take the steps instead of the elevator at her apartment building, she would walk without complaining, she liked to try new restaurants…she liked ravioli…and it had to be good for her to go back. I really enjoyed those dinners and drives with her…She loved my Italian built FIAT…she marveled that it was stick shift and loved the orange color….The last time I took her out for dinner I could tell that she was slipping a bit…but still she was doing remarkably well for her age. I dropped her off and one of the last things she said to me was …that I looked so much like my Dad…I hugged her and I left…and now I am sad that I will not see her again in this life…but I am happy knowing that she lived a full life and made mine richer because I knew her.
My heartfelt condolences go out to family and friends of Virginia. We were classmates at Wampum High School in the class of 1939. Although I have not seen her in many years I remember her kindness and thoughtfulness when we were young.
General William V McBride, USAF (Ret)
Robert DiGia’s story of Virginia paints a beautiful life portrait of a beautiful woman. I knew Virginia through her youngest brother, Richard (Dick), who was my very best friend in life. There were many good days at the Montozzi home listening to music, enjoying their mom’s sheet pizza, the kind that’s even better for breakfast at room temperature. She was 20 years older than us, but I remember when he and I were young she would watch us from a distance with a calm smile, happy to see us enjoying one another. And I will always remember the day she called to share that Dick had passed away. She said she thought of me as Dick’s brother, not just his friend. I shouldn’t have been, but I was surprised to see her obituary. After all, she was 95. But the last time I saw her, not so many years ago, she was still so strong, so confident. I can’t say I knew her well, but I knew her and appreciated her very much. I guess I loved her for her goodness.