Cheryl Denelli-Righter

Cheryl Denelli Righter

1957 - 2013 NORTH ADAMS Adoring mother, loving sister, and kind and caring friend, Cheryl Denelli Righter passed away on February 13, 2013 at UMass Medical Center with her family by her side.

Born in North Adams on January 26, 1957 to John and Mary (Pratt) Denelli, Cheryl married Thomas Righter in 1982 and together they welcomed a daughter, Marinda Snow Righter, into the world later that year. Tragically, Cheryl and Marinda would live most of their lives without Tom, who died in 1984. Cheryl graduated from Mount Greylock Regional High School in 1975 and earned her degree in Sociology from North Adams State College (now MCLA) in 1990. Combining her education with her warmth, kindness, and caring, Cheryl devoted her adult life to making the world a better place for others. Employed as a paraprofessional at MGRHS, Cheryl taught special needs students, assisting them to attain their educational goals. Cheryl was caretaker and shared living provider to Stephanie Granger for 18 years. In addition, she was involved in human rights and labor unions with the Western Massachusetts Labor Action organization.

Often described as a free spirit, Cheryl reveled in spending time with her extended family and friends in Williamstown, Maine, Martha's Vineyard, and the Boston area. While her physical presence will be missed, her spirit will live on through the human connections she made throughout her life.

In addition to Marinda, Cheryl leaves her devoted sister, Donna Denelli-Hess; in-laws Christopher and Linda Righter, Lisa and David Rubin, Holly and John Sagan; nieces Lexie Rubin, Ellie and Annabel Sagan, and nephew Ben Hess; and many cousins from the Denelli and Righter clans.

FUNERAL NOTICE: A memorial service to celebrate the life of Cheryl Denelli Righter will be held at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, February 23, 2013 at the First Baptist Church of North Adams, 131 Main St., with the Rev. David Anderson officiating.

In lieu of flowers or other remembrances, Cheryl's family requests donations (monetary or signing up as a donor) to the New England Organ Bank, or at 60 First Ave., Waltham, MA 02451.

As her final selfless act, Cheryl gave the gift of life to four New Englanders through organ and tissue donation.

This obituary was originally published in the North Adams Transcript.

Published online on Feb. 19, 2013 courtesy of North Adams Transcript.