Rose Marie Siracusano of Southold passed away while she was surrounded by her family March 11, 2017, after battling a long illness. She was 85 years old. We find comfort in knowing that she is now at peace with her husband, Louis Siracusano, who predeceased her in November 2016.
Rose Marie Mormando was born on Nov. 8, 1931, and was raised by a closely knit extended family in Brooklyn. She loved school and graduated high school a year early to attend New York University in Manhattan. She earned her Bachelor of Science in management with a minor in economics. At NYU she met her future husband of 61 years, Louis Siracusano.
Immediately after they were married, Rose Marie returned with her husband to live in Germany, where he was stationed with the U.S. Army. During that time they traveled extensively throughout Europe in their Volkswagen Beetle. They returned to Queens and eventually moved out to Syosset, weekending on the North Fork while raising their family of three children.
Rose Marie and Lou remained close to their extended family, with frequent adult “coffee-clutch” visits while all the cousins played.
Then a stay-at-home mom, Rose Marie decided to return to school to study and earned a Master of Science in elementary education from Hofstra University. She went on to teach for 18 years. Once her children were grown, she and her husband moved to Greensboro, N.C., where Lou had accepted a new position as an executive in the textile industry. Rose Marie then applied for and was accepted into the master gardener’s program, where she learned more about her passion: gardening. She then combined her love of gardening and teaching by starting and managing several master gardener school programs and over time reached more than a thousand students. Eventually, Rose and Lou returned to Southold to settle for their retirement and enjoyed all the offerings of the North Fork.
Rose Marie is survived by her children, Elizabeth S. Herkenham (William) of Charlton, N.Y., Lucille S. Drobet (Michael) of Cutchogue and Louis Siracusano of Southold. Rose Marie is also survived by three grandchildren, Carolyn Rose Herkenham, Robert Frederick Herkenham and Nikita Siracusano-Drobet, as well as her brothers, Frank (Roseanne) Mormando and Nicholas Mormando, both of Boca Raton, Fla., and their many nieces and nephews.
Rose Marie lived out her final years enjoying her retirement home with her husband, children and grandchildren. She was a role model as a strong and well-educated person during a time when this was not considered the traditional pathway for women. Rose Marie always cared about the well-being of her family. She will be missed.
The family will receive visitors Friday, March 24, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at DeFriest-Grattan Funeral Home in Mattituck. The Liturgy of Christian Burial will follow at 11 a.m. at Our Lady of Good Counsel R.C. Church in Mattituck. Interment will follow at St. Patrick’s R.C. Cemetery in Southold.
This is a paid notice.