School 13

Josephine Ann Merolla

August 21, 1930 ~ September 28, 2022 (age 92)


Josephine A. Merolla, 92, of Lawrence, MA, passed away September 28, 2022, at Sutton Hill Nursing Home, North Andover, MA, after a two-year debilitating illness. She was the daughter of the late Raphael and Anna "Nina" Merolla and is survived by first cousins and their families: Mary (Genovese) Ciofolo of North Andover and daughters Grace Ann (Ciofolo) Remmes and children, and Susan (Ciofolo) Antico and children of New Hampshire; her closest cousin and friend Josephine Genovese of Lawrence and niece Margaret Rose Jacobs of Reading; Josephine (Genovese) and Frank Quaglietta and children of New Hampshire; and Dr. Jo-Ann Merolla Sipple and husband Dr. William L. Sipple of Winthrop. She is also survived by first cousins Rosaria DiSilvestri and brother, Michele DiSilvestri of Rome, Italy. “Jo” Merolla had many friends and colleagues, especially Lorraine Lyons of Lawrence who cared for her and her home for over 20 years, and Ann Obar (retired) of Lawrence Public Library and Millie DiSalvo and Ramona Terranova of Andover and North Andover.

Always up for a penetrating intellectual discussion, Josephine was educated at Columbia University, NY, earning a bachelor degree and two master degrees, which she fastidiously applied to teaching the deaf and later as a school principal in New York City and environs.

After over thirty years’ residence and professional work in New York, she returned to her home in Lawrence to care for her aging mother while remaining actively engaged in the community’s political, educational, and cultural affairs. An avid reader, Jo became a close friend to and patron of the Lawrence Public Library.

Josephine and her family request that in lieu of flowers remembrances be made to one of her favorite causes: American Indian College Fund, 8333 Greenwood Blvd., Denver, CO 80221 (; Columbia College Women Scholars, Columbia University, 116th and Broadway, New York, NY 10027 (; Friends of Lawrence Public Library, 51 Lawrence St., Lawrence MA 01841 (

Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend visiting hours on Tuesday, October 4, 2022, from 10:00-11:30 AM at Cataudella Funeral Home, 126 Pleasant Valley St., Methuen. Her funeral mass will follow at 12:00 PM (Noon) at Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish/St. Theresa Church, 22 Plymouth St., Methuen. Committal services will be held in St. Mary Mausoleum Chapel with private burial to follow at a later date in Bellevue Cemetery, Lawrence.


October 4, 2022

10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Cataudella Funeral Home
126 Pleasant Valley Street
Methuen, MA 01844

October 4, 2022

12:00 PM
Our Lady of Good Counsel - St. Theresa Church
22 Plymouth Street
Methuen, MA 01844

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