FRANKLIN—Josephine “Jo” Salvatora (Purpura) Frongillo 78, of Franklin, passed away Friday June 5, 2009 at home, surrounded by her family, after being diagnosed with cancer a few months ago. She was the beloved wife of Edward A. Frongillo.
Born in the West End of Boston, March 1, 1931 a daughter of the late Mariano and Lena (DiBlasi) Purpura, she had lived in the Boston area for many years before moving to Franklin with her husband from Mattapan in 1961.
Educated in Boston schools, she was a talented dress maker who started a home based business while raising her children. Later, she founded and operated the Little White House Dressmakers shop in Franklin for 22 years, until December 2006. For the last two years she moved her business back to her home.
A life-long learner, Jo imparted her love of reading and exploration to her family. During their 58 years of marriage, she and her husband Ed traveled the United States and the world and frequently square danced.
She was a founding member of the Women’s Success Network and a member of its board of directors a member of the Professional Association of Custom Clothiers and the American Association of Retired Persons a communicant of St. Mary’s Church.
She will be remembered as a giving spirit to a community, and was a warm, wonderful listener who welcomed all into her home in a trusting and compassionate way.
In addition to her husband of 58 years, she is survived by her children, Edward A. Frongillo Jr. and his wife Marguerite of Columbia, SC, Mary Catherine Frongillo of Greenfield, Martin T. Frongillo and his wife Mary-Ellen of Milford, and Richard J. Frongillo and his wife Sandra of Franklin. Also surviving is her daughter-in-law Virginia Frongillo of Claremont, NC a sister Mary Roberts of Naples, Fla., and a brother James Purpura of Natick. She was known as Grammy to 11 grandchildren and Aunty Jo to many nieces and nephews.
She was the mother of the late Michael J. Frongillo who died in 1999 and the sister of the late Joseph and Salvatore Purpua.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend her funeral on Tuesday June 9th, at 9:15AM from the Charles F. Oteri & Son Franklin Funeral Home 33 Cottage St. (www.franklinfuneral.com) with a funeral Mass in St. Mary’s Church 1 Church Sq. at 10AM.
Burial will follow in St. Mary’s Cemetery.
Calling hours are Sunday June 7th, from 3-6PM and Monday June 8th, from 4-8PM at the funeral home.
It was Jo’s wish that, in lieu of flowers, donations in her memory be made to a charity of one’s choice.