Smith-McCracken Funeral Home
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Newton, NJ 07860
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Phyllis Joan Curcione

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LAFAYETTE - Phyllis Joan Curcione, 78, of Lafayette, died Friday, Feb. 28, 2014, at Kindred Hospital in Dover.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., Mrs. Curcione moved to East Orange when she married. In the 1960s, they built a house in Flatbrookville, then moved to Lafayette in 1983. She was incredibly talented in fashion design, architecture (she designed the home they lived in for the past 30 years), and any craft she got her hands on, all without formal training. More importantly she had a heart of gold.

Mrs. Curcione worked as a phone operator for the Americana Hotel in McAfee, then worked as a cashier for Ames department store in Newton. In 1986, while coming home from Ames after her shift (and making a lay-away payment), Phyllis was in a major automobile accident. She remained in a coma for six weeks and was in rehab for two years before returning home. Her disability kept her at home and she overcame countless struggles in the 27 years since her accident.

The daughter of the late John Kosyka, Mrs. Curcione also was predeceased by her husband of 34 years, Alfred, in 1996, and a brother, John Kokoszka, in 2012. She is survived by two sons, Glenn Curcione and his fiancée, Tammy Ernst, of Lafayette, and Christopher Curcione and his significant other, Susan Graham, of Lafayette; her grandson, Jacob Holmquist; her sister, Janice Molnar and her husband, Joseph; and her mother of 97 years, Veronica Drehlich-Staniliou.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, March 7, at Smith-McCracken Funeral Home, 63 High St., Newton. Interment will follow in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in East Orange. Visitation will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, March 6, at the funeral home.

Online condolences may be offered at www.smithmccrackenfuneralhome.com.

Published in The New Jersey Herald on Mar. 2, 2014
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