Gelsomina “Jessie” (Cataldi) DiFruscia, 91, of Andover and formerly of Methuen, passed away peacefully on Sunday, July 2, 2017 at Academy Manor Nursing Home with her family by her side. Jessie was born in Rocca d’Vendro, Italy and was the daughter of the late Casemiro and Maria Cataldi, and the widow of Domenic DiFruscia.
Jessie immigrated to America from Italy in the early fifties, came through Ellis Island, and settled in Lawrence. Her first job was working at the Wood Mill. She would return to Italy to get married and upon return, moved to Methuen with her husband, Domenic to start her family. She also worked at Anton Cleaners as a presser and later at Western Electric, AT&T, and Lucent for twenty years before she retired.
Jessie loved to garden, cook, and teach the Old Italian recipes to her family. She was proud of her Italian heritage and always had Sunday dinner for the family. She enjoyed traveling to Italy with her family and spent many hours knitting afghans and sweaters for her family members. She was a strong advocate for disability rights fighting for her son John’s right to a quality education. Jessie was a loving mother and grandmother and will be sadly missed by all who loved her.
Jessie is survived by her sons, Gerard A. DiFruscia and his wife Jeanne of Methuen, Domenic M. DiFruscia and his wife Laurie, and John DiFruscia, all of Haverhill; and her only granddaughter, Michelle DiFruscia of Haverhill. Jessie also leaves her brother and sister-in-law, Antonio and Anna Cataldi of North Andover. She was predeceased in death by her husband of fifty-eight years, Domenic.
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to visiting hours on Thursday, July 6, 2017 from 4:00 to 7:00 pm at Cataudella Funeral Home, 126 Pleasant Valley St., Methuen. Her funeral services will be held Friday, July 7, 2017 at 11:00 am at the funeral home. Burial will follow at Immaculate Conception Cemetery in Lawrence. For online condolences or directions please visit www.cataudellafh.com.