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Traditional Italian mom quick to help others

| Saturday, July 6, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Kathleen A. Marcantonio, 62, of New Kensington, died Wednesday, July 3, 2013, in her residence.

As the family matriarch, Kathleen Marcantonio kept her loved ones together through frequent gatherings and delicious meals.

“She carried on the tradition of my grandmothers who came to the States from Italy,” said her son, John Paul Marcantonio of Virginia. “We had every holiday at our house.”

Kathleen A. Marcantonio died Wednesday, July 3, 2013, in her home in New Kensington after a battle with colon cancer. She was 62.

“Everyone admired her for being such a strong woman,” said her daughter, Gina Sacriponte of Pittsburgh.

Mrs. Marcantonio's son will remember the many Italian dishes she cooked for her family, such as green beans with meatballs, homemade gnocchi and baked goods.

“She made pineapple upside-down cake like it was nobody's business,” Marcantonio said. “She had a real knack for the kitchen.”

Mrs. Marcantonio was the daughter of the late Otto and Assunta Mariani. She attended St. Anselm High School and earned a degree in chemical technology from Forbes Trail Technical School. She did chemistry research for several companies, such as Alcoa.

She later worked as the office manager for AK Valley Chiropractors in Lower Burrell for 15 years.

When she was not caring for her family or working, she was helping others.

“It's hard to say that there was anything more important to her,” her son said. “It's basically the way she lived.”

Mrs. Marcantonio volunteered in her church, Mt. St. Peter Roman Catholic Church, where she cooked for the food bank and annual Festa Italiana, and organized jewelry donations for the flea market.

She volunteered for Habitat for Humanity's ReStore.

“I think everyone will remember her for her incredible amount of care for others,” her son said. “She was selfless.”

In addition to her children, she is survived by her husband of 40 years, Paul J. Marcantonio; sisters Beatrice Wheeler and husband, Ron, of New Kensington and Darlene Kuhn of Export; and many aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews.

Visitation for family only will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday. Family and friends will be received from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Sunday in Giunta-Bertucci Funeral Home Inc., 1509 Fifth Ave., Arnold. A prayer service will be held at 9:30 a.m. Monday in the funeral home with a funeral Mass to follow at 10 a.m. in Mt. St. Peter Roman Catholic Church. Burial will be in Greenwood Memorial Park, Lower Burrell.

Nicole Chynoweth is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-850-2862 or nchynoweth@tribweb.com.

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