Obituary of Luigia Ciranni
Every now and then a life touches in extraordinary ways. Such was the life of Gina Ciranni (née Culmone), age 68, who passed away too soon on July 21, 2021.
Born in Delia, Sicily to the late Salvatore and Maria (née Marcello) Culmone, she immigrated to the United States with her loving husband, the late Giovanni Ciranni, eventually settling in Atco, NJ, where together, they built a beautiful life, dedicated to family, friends and their community.
Gina will forever be remembered as the most selfless, strong, loving, and devoted mother to not only her children but also to her grandchildren, her nieces and nephews, and quite frankly, to any person that crossed her path, regardless of their age or association. Generous with her time, talents, and love, she fiercely gave all she had to others. Most may read this and recall an impeccable meal she made them, a dress she created for them, or a critical moment she stood by them. She was truly one of a kind.
Gina is survived by her incredibly grateful children: Josie (Joe) Gambale, Maria Ciranni, and Giovanni Ciranni; her cherished grandchildren: Giuseppe, Ginetta, Angelo, Gian Michael, Marcella, Sophia, and Giovanni; her dear sisters: Josephine Culmone, Salva Culmone-Lazzari, and Grazia Culmone; as well as dozens of in-laws, nieces, nephews, friends, and family, both home and abroad, too numerous to list but not forgotten.
Gina is reunited with her adoring husband and favorite dance partner, Giovanni Ciranni, and is predeceased by her brothers Angelo Culmone, Orazio Culmone, and Joe Culmone; and most recently, by her sister Fifa Culmone-Lazzari.
The family will receive relatives and friends Saturday morning July 31, 2021, from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at the COSTANTINO-PRIMO FUNERAL HOME, 231 W. WHITE HORSE PIKE BERLIN, NJ 08009. Mass of Christian Burial 11:30AM at Christ the Redeemer Parish Assumption Church, 318 Carl Hasselhan Dr. Atco NJ 08004. Entombment Berlin Cemetery Mausoleum, Berlin NJ.
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Di tanto in tanto una vita tocca in modi straordinari. Questa è stata la vita di Gina Ciranni (nata Culmone), 68 anni, morta troppo presto il 21 luglio 2021.
Nata a Delia, in Sicilia, dal defunto Salvatore e Maria (nata Marcello) Culmone, emigrò negli Stati Uniti con il suo amorevole marito, il defunto Giovanni Ciranni, stabilendosi infine ad Atco, NJ, dove insieme costruirono una bella vita, dedicata alla famiglia, agli amici e alla loro comunità.
Gina sarà ricordata per sempre come la madre più altruista, forte, amorevole e devota non solo ai suoi figli, ma anche ai suoi nipoti, nipoti e nipoti, e francamente a qualsiasi persona che ha attraversato il suo percorso, indipendentemente dalla loro età o associazione. Generosa con il suo tempo, i suoi talenti e il suo amore, diede ferocemente tutto ciò che aveva agli altri. La maggior parte può leggere questo e ricordare un pasto impeccabile che ha fatto loro, un vestito che ha creato per loro, o un momento critico che stava accanto a loro. Era davvero unica nel suo genere.
Gina è sopravvissuta dai suoi figli incredibilmente grati: Josie Gambale, Maria Ciranni e Giovanni Ciranni; i suoi cari nipoti: Giuseppe, Ginetta, Angelo, Gian Michael, Marcella, Sophia e Giovanni; le sue care sorelle: Josephine Culmone, Salva Culmone-Lazzari e Grazia Culmone; così come dozzine di suocere, nipoti, nipoti, amici e familiari, sia in patria che all'estero, troppo numerosi per essere elencati ma non dimenticati.
Gina si riunisce con il marito adorante e compagno di danza preferito, Giovanni Ciranni, ed è predecisa dai suoi fratelli Angelo Culmone, Orazio Culmone e Joe Culmone; e più recentemente, dalla sorella Fifa Culmone-Lazzari.
La famiglia riceverà parenti e amici sabato mattina 31 luglio 2021, dalle 9:00 alle 11:00 presso la CASA FUNEBRE COSTANTINO-PRIMO, 231 W. WHITE HORSE PIKE BERLIN, NJ 08009. Messa della sepoltura cristiana 11:30 alla Chiesa dell'Assunzione Parrocchiale di Cristo Redentore, 318 Carl Hasselhan Dr. Atco NJ 08004. Mausoleo del cimitero di Berlino, Berlino NJ.
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Eulogy for our mom, Gina Ciranni
First, a very special thank you to Father Wallace and the Parish community for your support in my mom’s passing. My parents have been a part of this parish for over 45 years, and it holds a lot of special memories for our family.
Good afternoon everyone!
Together with my children, Angelo, GianMichael, and Marcella; my sister, Josie her husband Joe, their kids Giuseppe & Ginetta; my brother Giovanni and his children Sophia and Giovanni, and our Aunt Josephine; I thank you for being with us today, a mass honoring and celebrating the life of Gina Ciranni.
For those of you who do not know me, I am Maria Ciranni, Gina’s middle child.
I was given the task of writing and delivering the words of remembrance for our mom today. Probably, because I have never been one short on words.
But truth be told…This was by far, the hardest thing I have ever had to write. Quite simply. How do you write words when there are simply, no words?
“I have no words” - this was the phrase spoken to us by so many of you this past week. We absolutely agree.
None of us feel like this is real.
How is it possible that a woman as strong as our mother, who never had serious ailments, could pass so quickly? A woman that was always running to help others, could not be helped? A woman who was determined to fight this diagnosis –and who never loses a fight - could not win?
Our disbelief. Our shock. Our devastating sadness is shared with so many around the world.
Including our family in Italy and Canada, who tragically could not be with us due to Covid restrictions, but who’s love, and support have certainly been felt these past two weeks.
Our mom went from diagnosis to death in 7 days. 7 days.
So how can we even begin to process this?
Well, I picture, what a joyful reunion it must have been in heaven when my mom was welcomed by my dad! How they must be dancing together again. And how he must be showing her all the beautiful gardens in heaven, like he used to show his garden to so many of you!
My cousin Carmela said it best: “The sole comforting thought is that after Jesus opened his own arms to meet her, he then placed her into your dad's”
What a beautiful visual that is!
Our dad loved our mom so very much and vice versa. This week marks 13 years since our dad passed away.
To know they are together again brings me a tiny bit of peace and joy.
They say that only love can break your heart.
Well, our hearts shattered.
So clearly, my mom was incredibly loved…. and loved, incredibly.
The stories we have heard and read over the past ten days have been so beautiful and heartwarming! The same words were repeated, over and over again, describing our mother’s generosity, her wisdom,
her strength, and her heart.
I cannot even begin to express the tremendous impact our mother had on everyone’s life.
So, I ask each of you, to just take a moment, close your eyes and think of a memory of my mom…(pause)
Chances are several came through your head… And most, were probably about you being at a celebration or a dinner at my parents’ home, or one of ours ,perhaps it was her famous pepperoni bread or rice Krispy treats she brought to you, or more likely, a moment she stood by your side – a moment you may have been sick or seeking advice, a moment you may have lost a loved one or you were preparing for a marriage or birth.
It didn’t matter what part of the world you lived in.
Gina was always there. She always showed up. And in full force.
Oh! and for the record, to my cousins who were addicted to mom’s rice krispie treats – the ones that would stay soft forever – well, she did have a secret recipe and after all these years she finally admitted it and she shared it with me at the hospital… just saying!
My mom was a gifted creator.
And it goes way beyond her infamous treats, and sweets and meals. She had so many talents and was so generous with her time.
She created clothing, prom gowns, and the best blankets in the world. She created and donated hundreds of masks during Covid.
And she created solutions – from plumbing problems to people problems – mom had a solution for everything! She created “life hacks” before Tic-Toc even discovered and brought them to life!
But most importantly, she created a family…a home… and a legacy.
She was not just our mother. She was a mother to many – regardless of age, relation, or circumstance.
She had a gift for taking people under her wings. And she never stopped mothering. Whether you needed it or not. Whether you were related or not. And quite frankly, whether you wanted to be mothered or not.
MOM COULD BEST BE DESCRIBED AS A NORTH STAR
And just as the north star is an anchor for the northern sky, serving to guide people to their destination;
– so too, was my mother, - the anchor for so many friends, family, and neighbors.
She was a fixated destination that everyone could depend on no matter what was going on in the world around them or hers. And despite any relationship or distance.
She provided direction, inspiration, and hope!
With so much darkness in the world – she was a bright star for many – near and far. My cousin Sandro in Italy said it perfectly:
“ e incredibile pensare che la piu distante di tutti era la piu vicina al nostra curore” It is incredible to think that she who was furthest away was closest to our heart.
And she certainly was the north star for her 7 grandchildren – the 7 wonders of nonna’s world. Each of whom probably shared more with their nonna than they did with their parents!
She was always there for them from the very beginning, in fact she was actually present for the birth of my two sons, and was the one that cut GianMichael’s umbilical cord – so truly there from the very beginning!
Her wisdom and light will certainly be missed, especially by her grandchildren.
So I look to you grandkids and say to you - when you see the stars in the night sky – you look for the brightest one and there you will feel your nonna’s presence.
OUR MOM WAS A WOMAN OF GREAT FAITH & FORTITUDE
She had a DEEP FAITH in God –
Special prayers and novenas for every occasion and moment,
She Firmly believed in the Holy Trinity, all the angels and Saints –
But Saint Rita was by far, was her favorite saint of all time –known as the Saint of the Impossible
Not living in the area, I was thrilled yesterday, to see that a Saint Rita shrine was built right in front of our Parish Hall
And so it is that faith that we dig into today and that will get us through these moments and the days ahead.
We have had the wind knocked out of our soul, but we need to believe that the Lord is in the midst of our questioning, shock, anger and sadness.
He is with us. He will strengthen, encourage, and stay with us.
PRIOR TO HER PASSING we had a family conversation with my mom about treatment options and the journey ahead. My mother then said, should anything happen to me I want my funeral services all on one day and on a Saturday – that way no one needs to take time off from work.
My friends, you are here on a Saturday, ten days after my mom’s passing, because she did not want
anyone to lose a day of work…. Even in her illness she was thinking of others… That was Gina.
She then went on and looked me straight in my eye, over her glasses, pointing that finger and said sternly, “…and no 6-page eulogy … keep it short…if you have to say anything at all… just say, “We loved her. She was wonderful. We’ll miss her. goodbye”.
Well, we got the Saturday part right!
In the final hour prior to her passing, we had music playing, specifically Andrea Bocelli one of her
favorites… The song that was playing the moment she passed away was… “It’s time to say goodbye”
My mother may not have been able to speak, but she certainly made sure to let us know that it was time to say goodbye.
The song’s original title is “Con te partiro” “I will leave with you”
Well, she certainly took a part of us when she left.
Exactly Seven days after her diagnosis, our mother passed away. And true to our Lord’s word, on the 7th day, she finally rested. May you forever rest easy mommy.
Dance with the angels and especially with daddy.