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Prudenza Selvaggio (MAJ., US Army, Retired) Morrison

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HAMPTON - Prudenza Selvaggio Morrison, (MAJ., U.S. Army, Retired), entered into eternal rest on Thursday, February 27, 2014. She was the widow of Mr. John F. Morrison. MAJ. Morrison was born November 24, 1917 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was preceded in death by her parents, Francis Paul and Trisolina Selvaggio; two brothers, Matthew and Francis Paul Jr.; and three sisters, Norma Delia, Marie Churchill and Rita Pacniche. She is survived by her sisters, Amelia Casalnova, Muriel Barbieri and Theresa Tedesco; her loving nephew, Thomas Casalnova; and many, many nieces and nephews, who called her "Aunt Prudy". Prudenza was a faithful and committed member of her church, Saint Joseph Catholic Church in Buckroe, for 68 years. MAJ. Morrison's military career with the U.S. Army began in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in November 1942, proceeded to Fort Brady, Michigan for basic training, and then to her first assignment as a draftsman and member of the Intelligence Department of the Army. She served in the Women's Army Corps where she received $50 a month - wow, that was a lot of money! MAJ. Morrison's other locations of duty were Atlanta, Georgia, and Drew Field, Florida. She served as the first woman to be selected as driver of Army tanks. She once said, "I enjoyed changing the gears in them tanks - there were 16 gears!" In 1950, MAJ. Morrison was assigned to the Tokyo Headquarters in Japan where she posted the war maps for GEN. Douglas MacArthur. MAJ. Morrison indicated this is where she received her training in being tough, firm and exact in all details of life. She remained at the Headquarters until 1953 (near the end of the Korean War). MAJ. Morrison's assignments also included Fort Bragg and Fort Bliss, in Texas. She accepted her final orders to Fort Monroe, as Commanding Officer of the Women's Corps and Director of Transportation. She was once asked, "What was your favorite assignment or job of your 20 years in the Army?" She replied with a smile, "I loved Fort Bragg as Supply SGT. and Weapons Carrier Driver." What a "Lady" Veteran. After retirement in 1962, she was employed as a draftsman at the Newport News Shipyard, and fully retired in 1980 to enjoy the time with her husband, John Morrison, and his gardens. Mrs. Morrison truly enjoyed her many visits with her family in Philadelphia. She would travel there twice a year - her last visit was 2013 at the age of 96. She loved watching the baseball team in Philadelphia called "The Phillies". On her 95th birthday - the manager sent her a birthday package. Mrs. Morrison would have wanted to say "Thank you" for the friendship and love from her next door neighbor of 50 years, Mary Jaffeux, the Shaheen family, and her recent caregivers, Ruth and Earl Dixon. She had many friends and will be greatly missed. The family will receive friends from 7:00 PM to 9:00 PM on Monday, March 3, 2014 at Parklawn-Wood Funeral Home and 9:00 AM to 10:30 AM, Tuesday, March 4, 2014 at Parklawn-Wood Funeral Home. A Mass of the Resurrection will be held 11:00 AM, Tuesday, March 4, 2014 at St. Joseph Catholic Church, 512 Buckroe Avenue, Hampton. Interment, with honors rendered by the U.S. Army Honor Guard, will be at Hampton-Veterans Memorial Gardens. Friends are encouraged to visit www.parklawn-woodfh.com to share memories and words of condolences with the family. Arrangements are under the care of Parklawn-Wood Funeral Home, 2551 N. Armistead Ave. in Hampton, 23666.
Published in Daily Press from Mar. 1 to Mar. 2, 2014
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