Scarborough, ME — Gail Katherine Catanzaro, 81 years old died in her home with family on January 23, 2016.
She was born in Winchester, Mass to the parents of Joseph and Ruth Tansey. Gail graduated from St. Charles High School in 1952 where she was president of her class and later served on the student governing board for Children’s Hospital in Boston. Here she received her nursing degree and was appointed a nursing position at Children’s hospital where she worked during the polio epidemic of 1954 and later under Dr. Farber during the early stages of his development on treating cancer.
Gail met the love of her life Salvatore Catanzaro while working in Boston. They were married in 1958 and moved to Illinois where she worked as a nurse and was recognized for her efforts in updating the hospitals children’s ward from the knowledge she gained at Children’s Hospital in Boston. After several years in Illinois, she and her husband Salvatore chose to settle in Clinton Connecticut where she continued her career as a nurse at Middlesex Hospital and later as a school nurse and educational assistant for 19 years. She was again recognized with the staff appreciation award upon her retirement in 1992 for being instrumental as one of the initial individuals who worked to have children with physical disabilities mainstreamed into the regular education classroom for the first time.
Even after retirement Gail’s life continued to be about her dedication to caring for others with kindness and compassion. She and her husband Sal joyfully enjoyed retirement by traveling and working in their gardens at their farmhouse in New Hampshire. Gail was most proud of her family and enjoyed spending most of her time with her grandchildren who were always greeted with smiles, hugs and fresh baked brownies.
She was adored by her family and is survived by her husband Salvatore of 58 years, Brother Richard Tansey of Half Moonbay, CA, Sister Ann Bellino of Bedford MA, predeceased by brother George of Falmouth ME, children Paul Catanzaro of Marlborough MA, Son David Catanzaro of Exeter NH and daughter Ruth Hughes of Scarborough ME, and many nieces and nephews but most importantly by her beloved grandchildren Coryn Catanzaro, Courtney Catanzaro, Jack, Ben and Tansey Hughes and David Catanzaro who she now joins in heaven.
In line with Gail’s constant concern for others, she did not wish to have formal services but preferred to have her family gather together in celebration at the family’s farm house in New Hampshire at a time that was warm, sunny and her flowers in full bloom. The farm is a place dear to her heart and where her family could always go to be together.
In lieu of flowers please send contributions to Gail’s favorite charity, St. Jude’s Children’s Research Fund.