Anita Caroline Marrone

Anita Caroline Marrone

Anita Caroline Marrone

WESTERLO — Anita Caroline Marrone of Westerlo — an ebullient woman who put her boundless energies into the care of her family and town — died peacefully in the presence of loved ones on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020. She was 77.

She was born in Brooklyn, New York and was the daughter of the late Gasper Reno and Catherine Ganzert. Her brothers — Herbert “Buster” Reno, Charles Verlander, and Donald Verlander — died before her.

“Anita was the high school sweetheart and beloved wife of Andrew Marrone Sr.,” her daughter wrote in a tribute. “They were rounding the corner on being married for 59 years and were partners in every aspect of life.

“Whether they were debating the right way to turn while getting lost in Boston while driving their camper and kids on the latest adventure or cutting off the top of the ‘perfect Christmas tree’ that was about 10 feet too tall to make it in the house! (I think they bought a faux tree the following year!) Anita and Andrew always made it through together!

Mrs. Marrone was the loving mother of Andy Jr., Adam, and April. “Who knew three kids could be such a handful?” the tribute said. “She valued her friendships highly and maintained an annual gathering with her childhood and lifelong friends — Flach, App, and Rassi.

“Anita led many an adventure for her family as her kids were growing up! Road trips were where Andrew and Anita excelled!” her family wrote. “Anita organized the itinerary and Andrew did the driving and most of the time, things actually went as planned! From forced museum visits to getting lost in the fog at the top of the mountains in Virginia with a single pancake for breakfast to be shared, vacations always held plenty of surprises to keep things fresh for the Marrone family!

“Anita loved learning and discovering, and her love and curiosity always kept her trying new things and sharing what she knew or created! This included putting aside her complete and total dislike of baseball and actually enjoying and encouraging others to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown! The only museum Dad ever liked!

“Holidays are special times for families and Anita made sure they were special for her family! Holiday riddles that she penned and planned, scavenger hunts, calling Santa at the North Pole on Christmas Eve, looking for Rudoph’s nose out the window, creating the perfect Bunny Cake for Easter, decorating her house for Halloween (and buying the big candy bars!) prepping the turkey and bringing her gingerbread to birthday brunches are just a few of her special touches that come to mind. Anita’s family was everything to her and it was reflected in how she loved every single holiday and the time they spent together.

“Anita wore many hats in her lifetime. Along with being a wonderful wife and mother, fabulous cook and just as tidy as her mom, Catherine, she also managed the numbers and bookwork for the M & M Bakery. When her kids were in their teens, she also started and managed her own ceramics business — The Countryside Shop — where she taught both children and adults for many years. A favorite quote from Anita: If you have to ask if it’s ‘good enough,’ it’s not!

“Anita enjoyed being creative and artistic throughout her entire life. In addition to her skill as a ceramist, she created mosaic works that were inspired by nature and loved ones and wrote poetry. We always looked forward to our cards with her original heartfelt poems inside! Anita was a prolific poet with a completed book of poetry and was in the process of compiling her memoirs into a book and seeking publication.

“Earlier I talked to Cousin Maria — Anita’s cousin and my (April’s) second cousin — and we were talking about looking for signs from our moms. I told her I wasn’t that organized and didn’t think to ask my mom for a sign. She insisted there would be a sign.

“Well, as I was writing the part about us kids being a handful (we were perfect, by the way) the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever seen in my life just appeared. The sky was painted with colors that don’t typically grace a November sky, but now that Mom has the potential to have some input, I can see that she’ll make sure there are some pretty spectacular sunsets!

“Anita’s favorite color never wavered; it was always green and she had an incredible connection with nature. Whether it was nurturing the gorgeous flower gardens that surrounded her house, feeding every bird within a five-mile radius during the long winters, or helping baby birds that had no mom, Anita was there.

“More than once she nursed those baby birds to fledge. And whether it was the deer that ate her hostas and shrubs or the black bear that continued to rip out her bird feeder, Anita loved all of God’s creatures and appreciated and cared for them with her entire spirit.

“This petite Italian woman who was the matriarch of our family wasn’t afraid to tell anyone what she thought, and to fight for what she believed was right. She both cared about her home and family and also the town and place she called home.

“She was active with the town meetings and wanted to make it a better place for those she loved. She was tireless and gave 100 percent of herself to everything she did — every single day.

“The world is a little less spicy without Anita in it. Tabasco was her fave and I think it was only partly responsible for her zest for life and fiery personality! She made the world a better place and we will miss her and love her every day of our lives.”

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Anita Caroline (née Reno) Marrone is survived by her husband, Andrew Marrone Sr., and by her three children, Andy Marrone Jr. and his wife, Lana, Adam Marrone, and April Zhang and her husband, Wei.

She is also survived by her grandchildren, Brittany Quinn and her husband, Conor, Jordan Marrone and his wife, Kayla, and Cenzia Zhang, and by her sweet great-granddaughter, Sloane Elizabeth Quinn. Anita is also survived by numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews.

Arrangements are by W. C. Brady’s Sons Funeral Home.

Memorial contributions may be made to The Nature Conservancy at www.nature.org or call 800-628-6860.

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