Josephine “Jo” Cunningham, beloved wife of Reginald “Reggie” Cunningham, passed away peacefully surrounded by her family on Friday, April 3rd. Jo was born on August 23, 1936 to Angela and Mario Lodato and raised in Smithers, West Virginia until she moved with her family to Stamford, Connecticut in 1952. Jo is one of ten siblings: Philip, Ross, Rose, Mary, Pauline, Antoinette, Angelina, John, and Mario. She also has seven sisters and brothers in law: Arthur, Gerard, Ray, Helen, Eleanor, Margarita, and Josianne.
Jo met the love of her life, Reggie, when she moved to Stamford. Jo and Reggie married and had four children: Andy, Richard, Deborah, and Brian. Their family grew over the years to include sons and daughters in law: Adrienne, Barbara, Bryan, and Theresa. They also had 13 grandchildren: Amanda, Jessica, Carly, Emily, Ryan, Megan, John, Sarah, Michael, Christopher, Matthew, Julia, and Brianna.
Jo was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, aunt, and friend. She took enormous pride in family and graciously welcomed all who walked through her door. Food and family were synonymous, her warmth was always felt through her sauce and meatballs no matter the time of day. The only thing in her life that matched her devotion to family was her unwavering faith.
Jo was a founding member of Saint Philip Church 53 years ago and the parish has become an extension of her family. She was a member of the choir for over forty years, singing at Sunday mass and the annual Christmas concert; music was a significant part of Jo’s life and something that brought her great joy. Jo was a member of the parish counsel, she made Irish soda bread for the annual Saint Patrick’s Day dinner, she was actively involved in the rosary group, adorations of the blessed sacrament, Stations of the Cross, and the annual Fall Festival.
Jo was a committed member of the Catholic Daughters for 27 years where she served as Court Regent and Financial Security Officer. She worked tirelessly for the court and its projects which included fundraising for scholarship programs, Malta house, and Birthright. She had a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Padre Pio and she organized an annual pilgrimage to the Saint Padre Pio Shrine each August.
During her six month battle with pancreatic cancer, Jo was a beacon of strength and positivity for everyone around her; she lived by the words of her favorite saint, Padre Pio, “pray, hope, and don’t worry.”
There will be a celebration of life for Jo at a later date. Donations can be made in her honor to Saint Philip Church either by mail at 1 Father Conlon Place, Norwalk, CT 06851 or online: https://www.osvonlinegiving.com/575/Home/NewQuickGive
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