MERIDEN - Elizabeth "Betty" Ossola, 91, of Meriden, passed away peacefully on Friday, May 2, 2014, at the Southington Care Center after a brief illness. She was the beloved wife of the late James A. Ossola.
Betty was born in Augusta, Ga., the daughter of Thelma ("Pum") and JP Gaffney. She and James relocated to New York City in 1947, and then to Meriden in 1956, where they spent the rest of their lives raising their family. Betty worked for the Meriden school system for several years before joining Connecticut General Medicare where she worked until her retirement in the mid-80s. She was a member of the Trips and Tours Travel Club and the Meriden Women's Club. She enjoyed exploring new places and spending time with her friends. Betty was a member of the Soroptimist International of Connecticut River Valley Club, where she loved the camaraderie of the members as well as the worthwhile work the group did for women's causes. Betty was an exceptional gardener and cook, and her family and friends were constantly treated to her delicious meals as well as home-grown vegetables and beautiful flowers from her large backyard garden. Despite the many miles between Betty and her sister and brother-in-law, Anne and Ed Kenny, they maintained a close and loving relationship throughout their lives. In turn, that fostered strong family ties between all of their children, grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren. The families continue to vacation together annually on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina.
Betty's legacy is the unconditional love she showered upon her family and friends, and her generous nature. She always put everyone's needs ahead of her own.
She is survived by her four children, daughters, Barbara Simmons and Madeline Martone; son, Paul Ossola; and daughter and son-in-law, Lisa Ossola and Jerry Nickodemski. She also leaves behind three grandchildren, Carol Salyerds, Michael Simmons, and Ellen Ossola; as well as five great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandson; and many nieces, nephews; great-nieces, and great-nephews. She was predeceased by her granddaughter, Lauryn Ossola; and two son-in-laws, Mike Simmons and Tony Martone.
Friends and relatives are invited to attend a Mass of Christian burial to be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday, May 8, at St. Rose of Lima Church, 35 Center St., Meriden. Everyone is asked to meet directly at church. Burial will follow at Sacred Heart Cemetery in Meriden. Calling hours will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 7, at John J. Ferry & Sons Funeral Home, 88 E. Main St, Meriden. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Soroptimist International of CT River Valley Club in c/o Geraldine Bennett, 1150 S. Main St., 104, Middletown, CT 06457. For online condolences and directions, please visit www.jferryfh.com.