Our own Yankee shortstop, Serafina Mazzola, was known as Feenie to family and friends. Born on August 28, 1935, she was the second daughter born to Anthony Mazzola and Lidia Buscemi. She grew up with five siblings in the Bronx where they lived over their family pasta and ravioli shoppe. Brother Paul and her sister, Miss Rose, sailed to Heaven before her. Her sister, Emilia (Amy Ragusa), and brothers, Anthony and Guy (Sue) are blessed for all the ways Feenie loved them and their families.
After high school at Evander Childs, Feenie worked for Ma Bell (New York Telephone Company.) Her career spanned 20+ years, and she saw the company evolve into the tech age as Verizon. After she retired, Feenie had a blast with "food adventures!" She co-owned an Italian deli in Yonkers where family cooked, worked the counter, and more. A softball player herself, she and a friend rolled out their hot dog truck, Feenie's Weenies, and served the baseball crowds in New Rochelle!
When she retired (again!), she joined the team at JB & Sons on Mile Square Road where she worked through 2023. Feenie loved the counter life, serving customers and getting to know the locals, including the firemen who were regulars. We could count on Aunt Feenie to arrive at family gatherings with ravioli in hand! She made sure we tasted the homemade vodka sauce, roasted peppers with pignolis, smoked mozzarella, and more!
Feenie was a rock-star Aunt to three generations of nieces and nephews. The original crew includes Eddie Caperna (Diane), Paul Mazzola (Jody), Elise Rodriguez (Tommy), Frank Ragusa (Marlene), Lou Ragusa (Christine), Daniel Mazzola, Tara Mazzola Callaghan (Danny), Anthony LoBue (Sue) and Isabella Mazzola-DuMont (Zane.) Aunt Feenie could talk baseball and football stats and proudly represented the Yankees and the Giants. We rode the subway and went to ballgames together, and exchanged texts during big wins and losses, often commiserating over team managers and player trades. We grew up with annual picnics, road trips to Marlboro, birthday parties, eating under the grapevine, Little League games and more.
Aunt Feenie was a snowbird! Royal Palm Beach, Florida was her second home! She loved the beach, pool, friends, and the occasional margarita. She loved it when family and friends headed south for fun in the sun! She would meet you in West Palm, Fort Lauderdale, Pompano Beach, Punta Gorda or Boca Raton and knew the best places for an early bird or happy hour. We appreciate the love that has been shared by neighbors in Village Walk and Greenway.
Feenie had a friend pack like no other. Friendships that spanned 50+ years celebrated life together in beautiful ways. They laughed and cried together. Sunned on the beach together, and planned pool parties. Met at their favorite diners. They celebrated milestones together, reminisced, and cared for each other. Aunt Feenie was a godmother and aunt in friend circles too!
A devotion to Padre Pio enriched her faith life several years ago. She and Amy organized regular visits with friends and family to the shrine in Cromwell, CT. We all learned of St. Padre Pio's mantra - faith, hope and don't worry. We appreciate the prayer chains in different churches and in communities where she met new friends such as sister-in-law, Caroline's apartment complex.
We appreciate everyone who has prayed for Feenie this past month, and would like to especially hug and thank the Millennial and Gen Z nieces and nephews who visited, texted, prayed, and encouraged her: Steven, Anthony, Eddie (& Rachel,) Christy (& Nick,) Alexandra (& Michael), Louis, Stephanie, Frankie, Kristen, Kacie, Christopher, Amelia, Tom, Andy (& Christine,) Eric, Kevin, Gabriella & Lexie. Aunt Feenie rejoiced in the births of our preschool/toddler crew and was a doting great-aunt to Juliette, Brianna, Drew and Samantha.
Family and friends will forever miss the phone calls, texts, birthday and holiday cards, meeting for dinner, and all the ways Aunt Feenie checked on us and brought people together. Rest in peace, Aunt Feenie. We can only imagine your joy in seeing the face of God.