It is with extreme sadness that we share the passing of Josephine Zappulla Bruni, 99, of Torrington, CT who died peacefully in her sleep on Wednesday April 22, 2020. Born March 31, 1921, in Torrington, to John and Pasqualina (Borgio) Zappulla, Josephine graduated from Torrington High School class of 1939 and organized her class reunions throughout the years. She worked in the office at Woolworth’s Department store and volunteered on the home front with the Red Cross during World War II. On Easter Sunday, April 1946 she met the love of her life Fred P Bruni. They were married the same year on November 4 at St Peter’s Church. For 65 years Fred and Jo devoted their life together to their family, friends and the town of Torrington where they served their community through countless organizations.
Josephine is survived by her cherished daughters, Patricia M. Keefe and her husband John of Medfield, MA and Marijo B. Weik and her husband Michael of Goshen CT. She leaves 12 adoring grandchildren: Tricia Keefe of Houston, Texas, Emily Marcucci and Michael of Medfield, MA, John Keefe and Amy of London, England, Peter Keefe and Alana of Walnut Creek, CA, Father Joseph Keefe of New York City, James Keefe and Hadley of Sacramento, CA, Matthew Weik and Chelsey of Torrington, Betsy McQuade and Timothy of Natick, MA, Molly Schultz and James of Minnetonka, MN, Helen Keefe of Rome, Italy, Thomas Keefe and Maggie of Millis, MA, and Paul Keefe of Medfield, MA, as well as 28 beloved great-grandchildren,11 nieces and nephews and a special grand-dog, Layla, that she adored. Besides her parents Jo was predeceased in death by her brother and his wife Tom and Marion Zappulla and her nephew TJ Zappulla. She is survived by her loving, devoted sister, Marianne Maynard and her husband Dick of Williamsville, NY.
Josephine always put her family first. Backyard picnics and family birthdays were celebrated with plenty of delicious homemade food and her desserts were plentiful and out of this world delicious. Her hundreds of jars of jelly, pounds of fudge and roasted peppers were readily packaged and distributed to family and friends. Nicknamed the cookie gal by her grandchildren, she baked Italian cookies for every special occasion. For many years she was able to travel with Fred. Some of their favorite adventures were the gatherings on Martha's Vineyard or Acapulco with several fun-loving couples who remained lifelong friends. She was very close to her sister Marianne, who she spoke with every day as well as together with their families celebrated many holidays and enjoyed many vacations. She watched the daily Mass on TV and was a loyal UCONN girls basketball fan. A generous heart and loving attention to detail were some of her trademark qualities and her devoted care for her “Freddie” was a living example of true love.
When her friend Eleanor McCann convinced her to help keep the books of the newly formed organization LARC, she jumped on board until she retired in 1991 at the age of 70. She was an active member of the Charlotte Hungerford Auxiliary and chaired their fashion show fundraiser for many years. She volunteered at The United Way, Elks Club, LARC advisory board, Altrusa Club, the Torrington Women's Club, the Junior Women's Club, March of Dimes telethon, Northwest Connecticut Chamber of Commerce, Lions Club, Torrington YMCA, The Republican town committee and UNICO. She was a member of the Rosary Society and the St Anne’s Society of St Peter's Church. Josephine was honored to be inducted into the Northwest Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame. In recent years when her health began to fail she took to letter writing, sending cherished epistles in her unmistakably beautiful handwriting to grandchildren and friends around the world. If it happened to be your birthday there were always a few dollars tucked inside the envelope or an old photo of happy times spent together.
Josephine’s family would like to thank all of Jo’s family and friends who loved her with visits, cards and kindness throughout the many years of her life and also Heidi Randall, Sarah McConell and the staff at Keystone Place for their special care.
A funeral Mass for the repose of Josephine’s soul will be said and live streamed via Zoom for the family and friends on Saturday April 25 (see below.) Due to the coronavirus, there will be a private burial service. A celebration of Josephine’s life will be celebrated at a future date.
In lieu of flowers, please consider contributions to the Fred and Josephine Bruni Scholarship Fund, c/o The Community Foundation of Northwest CT, P.O. Box 1144, Torrington, CT 06790. Condolences may be sent to the Bruni family by visiting www.cookfuneralhomect.com.
Live Streamed Mass of Christian Burial
Saturday April 25, 2020 by Zoom from NYC.
If you would like to watch the Mass of Christian Burial for Josephine to be said by Josephine’s grandson, Father Joseph Keefe, please join the live stream on Saturday April 25, 2020 at 11AM here: Schuyler Hall is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting:
Topic: Funeral Mass - Josephine Bruni
Time: Apr 25, 2020 10:50 AM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 869 2553 5479
To send flowers to Josephine's family, please visit our floral store.