My mom, Margaret Mary Perricone, passed away this past December 30th. She was 62 years old, and is survived by her husband (and my Dad) Joseph Perricone, my sister Joey Ann, my brother Michael, me, and about a hundred cousins, uncles, brothers and sisters, and grandkids.
She was an incredible woman, to summarize her life would take forever. I’ll take a stab anyway….
She was a woman ahead of her time; marrying into an Italian-American family back in the early sixties in the Bronx meant being a housewife, and she would have none of it. She worked, her whole life she had a job, and much like me, about fifty of them. She was a chef, a bank teller, a seamstress, worked as a caterer, a manager, in a deli, at a college….
Her hobbies were endless. She did macrame, knitting, crocheting, ceramics, she was a competent builder, she designed furniture, reupholstered just about everything in the house about fifty different times.
She, like me, was a chronic insomniac, and (unlike me), spent all of her extra waking time doing things. That’s probably what we’ll all remember most about her. She never sat still, not for a minute. She filled her life to the rim, to overflowing, with love, with people and friends and family.
She was a second mother to all of mine and my brother and sister’s friends. She loved to eat and cook, and she was a helluva cook at that. She enjoyed her grandkids more than anything else as she got on in years, when we would visit from California she loved to have my kids crawl all over her and her house.
Alas, she was a 50-year smoker, and when she was diagnosed with advanced stage 4 lung cancer on November 29th, the prognosis was very, very grim. As it turned out, it was worse than we could have imagined. She lasted barely a month, and most of that time she was in terrific, debilitating pain. It was very difficult watching such a vibrant and strong woman reduced to being bedridden and almost immobilized; torturous, really.
Think of her when you laugh or find yourself inspired or brought to a shaking rage reading my work, because I am her son, and so much of what comes out of me, came out of her. I loved her very much, and will miss her. The world was a better place because of her, and I hope to have made as big an impact on so many lives as she did when I am done.