Clelia Gallizioli

Gallizioli, Clelia (Claire)
January 15, 1924-April 18, 2013. She was born Clelia Maria Posilippo to Emilia(Schena) and Giacomo Posilippo in San Felice al Lago, Italy, a tiny town near Bergamo on January 15, 1924, and went home to the Lord on April 18, 2013 in Glendale, Arizona. She was brought to the United States with her parents when she was five years old, right into the Great Depression and lived in the Bronx until adulthood. When she was 23, while living with her sister Rina in California, she met a handsome young man named Aristide Gallizioli, whom she learned had been born just four miles from her hometown in Italy, in the nearby town of Riva di Solto. He had been brought to the United States by his father when he was nine to live in Michigan. Their families had never met.

After traveling halfway around the world to find each other, they married in 1948, moved to Arizona, suffered the loss of their second daughter, Susan, in 1955, and went on to raise three other daughters.

The little girl from Italy who grew up in the Bronx came to embrace the outdoor life enjoyed by her husband. She learned to hunt and fish alongside her mate, and they built a cabin in the woods in Northern Arizona. They lived there during the summers throughout their retirement until failing health forced them to stay in the Phoenix area when they were in their early 80's.

Clelia loved plants and flowers. At their cabin in the woods there were many pine trees, and she mourned the loss of any one of them that died. The building site for the cabin was chosen in the place on the acre lot where the fewest trees would have to be sacrificed. She never wanted anyone to give her flowers "because they die." She preferred a live flowering plant, or realistic artificial flowers because she hated to see cut flowers wilt and die.

Clelia worked as a seamstress for many years, but took night classes in college through much of her adult life, and was happily working as a bookkeeper prior to her retirement. She loved numbers and words, and was an avid fan of crossword puzzles and Scrabble. She loved rocks and had a small collection of some she found interesting and beautiful.

She also loved music and loved to dance.

She spent several years volunteering at a hospital when in her middle age.

In recent years, she and her husband resided at the Thunderbird Retirement Resort, where she enjoyed the musical entertainment, playing Scrabble with friends, and helping new residents settle in.

She is survived by her beloved husband, Aristide (Steve) Gallizioli, daughters Laura Young (Paul), Debra Speakes, Mary Ann DeLawyer, and sons-in-law Phil Speakes and Mark DeLawyer, grandchildren Susan DeLawyer (Val), Catherine Hernandez (Rigo), Jaclyn DeLawyer, David Young (Elaine), Diana Petersen (Matt), and eight great-grandchildren, Briana, Alyssa and Mario Hernandez, Tyler and Jessica Young, Aaron Petersen, and Tyler and Erica DeLawyer. She joins in death her daughter Susan, sister Rina, brothers Lee, Victor, and Reno, and her parents. Services will be at St Raphael's Catholic Church at 5525 W Acoma, Glendale, AZ 85306 on Thursday at 11:00 AM.. In lieu of flowers, the family would prefer she be remembered by the planting of live plants, or contributions to St. Vincent de Paul charities

Published in The Arizona Republic on Apr. 24, 2013