Heather Lynn Stambo, 26, left our world suddenly on Sunday, April 13, 2014.
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Born Aug. 16, 1987, Heather was the beautiful and beloved daughter of Paul and Barbara (Orsini) Stambo of South Windsor. Besides her parents, she leaves behind her cherished sister and best friend in the world, Haley, of South Windsor; the love of her life, her fiancé, Christopher O'Brien, of Windsor Locks, whom she was to be married on Oct. 18; and her dearly loved pets, Peanut, Butter, Bella, Dewey, Milo, and Lily who will greatly miss her affection and love. She also leaves her paternal grandmother, Helen Stambo of Vernon; her Uncle Jack Orsini of Haverhill, Mass.; her aunt, Donna, and uncle, Gene Martin, of Gold Canyon, Ariz.; her uncle, Glenn, and aunt, Lori Stambo, of Tampa, Fla.; her aunt, Carole Stambo of Vernon; her aunt, Carolyn Orsini Nelson of Groveland, Mass.; her cousins, Darcy Bourgeois, and her husband, Bob, of Chazy, N.Y., and their daughter, Emily, Rachel Orsini of Beverly, Mass., Nicholas and Nicole Stambo of Tampa, Fla.; her great-uncle, Bill Orsini of Wethersfield; her great-uncle, Jim, and great-aunt, Nina Orsini, of West Hartford; her future father-in-law, Steve O'Brien of West Hartford; her cherished RDA family; several cousins and friends. She was predeceased by her paternal grandfather, Enos Stambo; and her maternal grandparents, John and Barbara Orsini.
Heather was raised and educated in South Windsor, graduating from South Windsor High School in 2005. After high school, she attended The Hartford Conservatory, studying dance pedagogy. During her school years, she played the clarinet and field hockey in middle school, and began her passion for helping and rescuing animals with the Humane Society in elementary school. She was in the junior bowling league at Ten Pin Bowl for 12 years, often with her Papa coaching and encouraging from behind the lanes. She began her passion for dancing before she could walk, with what her Papa called her "dancing feet." She danced at several studios throughout her life and always knew that she was going to be a dance teacher. She fulfilled her dream at the age of 19 in 2006 when she founded Rhythms Dance Academy (RDA) in East Windsor. She worked long and hard at building a studio, along with her family, that created a family atmosphere where children and adults could feel comfortable and welcomed in. She recognized that everyone had a talent and she worked at bringing that talent to the forefront so that each and every one of her students felt special. It was often expressed that she had a natural ability and patience with her students to keep them focused and learning while having fun. In the past two years, she created the RDA Competition Team, which competed at several area competitions. She inspired her team with creative ideas and developed their talents to bring them to victory over and over again. She referred to her students and parents as her RDA family, which she took great pride in and had a genuine love for. Whether you danced with her for years or just started, she won your heart with her love for kids and her passion for dance. Her team and students will carry on to complete their competitions and recital in her honor to showcase her hard work and dedication. Heather's love and dedication to her family meant everything to her. She was proud to be her Papa's caregiver throughout his illness and catered his every need. Her love for her fiancé, Chris, was a bond that would never break. Her friendship and love for her sister, Haley, was endless. Her compassion for animals was admirable. Her sense of humor was endearing and her smile that lit up a room was contagious. She will always be remembered and greatly missed by everyone who knew her.
Her family will receive friends and family for calling hours on Friday, April 18, from 4 to 8 p.m. at Samsel & Carmon Funeral Home, 419 Buckland Road, South Windsor.
A service in her honor will be held at the funeral home on Saturday, April 19, at 10 a.m. followed by burial at Wapping Cemetery in South Windsor.
Donations in her honor can be made to the Maryen Lorrain Children's Dance Foundation, 7123 Saltburg Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15235.
Please visit us at
for online condolences and guestbook.
Samsel & Carmon Funeral Home
419 Buckland Road
South Windsor, CT 06074-3709
Published in Journal Inquirer from Apr. 17 to Apr. 21, 2014