CARMELLA “MELL” DeJOHN (nee Liuzzo) age 89, beloved and devoted wife for 67 years of Rev. Mr. Ross C. Sr. (retired Mayor, City of Mayfield Heights); cherished mother of Ross C. Jr (wife Patricia), Michael A. (wife Mary Alice and the late Catherine), Robert J. (wife Lori), Carla M. Prusak (husband Michael) and Christine A. D’Alessandro (husband James); loving grandmother “Nana” of Ross C. III, Melissa Capretta (Riccardo), Mark, Christopher (Sarah), Daniel, Christina Chianese (A.J.), Michael J., James D’Alessandro, Michael Prusak, Teresa, twins Thomas and Michael D’Alessandro, Bobby and great-grandmother “Mama Mell” of Lola, Stella, Georgia, Charlie, Owen, Olive, Henry and Benjamin; devoted daughter of the late Anthony and Illuminata “Lena” Liuzzo; dearest sister of Mary Liuzzo, Mario Liuzzo (wife Joanne) and the late Joseph (wife Shirley, deceased), Anthony Liuzzo and Nancy Mazzone (husband Biagio, deceased); dear sister-in-law, aunt, great-aunt, cousin and friend of many.
Carmella was born on January 23, 1927 in Bronte, Sicily and died on July 28, 2016 with her loving family by her side. She came to the United States with her mother, through Ellis Island in New York, when she was two months old. They joined her father and settled in Cleveland where she grew up. Carmella attended John Adams High School and quit after the eleventh grade to go to work to help support her family. She was a dress maker and seamstress for the old J. Brock & Co.
She married the love of her life Ross DeJohn, October 29, 1949. They moved to Mayfield Heights in 1953 and resided there until 2015 when they moved to Willoughby to the Breckenridge Retirement Complex.
Carmella was a member of St. Clare Catholic Church since 1953. She was a Eucharistic minister at St. Clare, involved in the Renewal program and a Eucharistic Minister at the Cleveland Clinic in the ministry to the sick. She also was involved in the Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts.
Carmella loved bowling, playing slot machines and traveling; especially to Italy and Florida. She was a tremendous cook and baker and an excellent seamstress. She also loved to garden. Carmella enjoyed shopping, which her husband liked to call retail therapy.
Carmella was a loving, giving and generous person. She was a strong willed and determined woman who dedicated her life to raising her children and supporting her entire family. She had a witty sense of humor and she enjoyed the simple things in life. She was honest and you always knew where you stood with her; but if you had to sum up her life, the best words that would describe Carmella would be hospitable and dedicated. She always welcomed people into her home and never stopped serving her guests whether you were family or friends and hungry or not! Carmella was dedicated to her husband, children, grandchildren, and to her entire extended family and never stopped serving her family up until the end. She was a caregiver to all and touched many lives throughout her life.
She overcame many obstacles in her life with all of her health issues from her lupus, arthritis, kidney cancer surgery, dialysis to a kidney transplant to breaking her neck. Her will, determination and toughness, but most of all her faith got her through life. She taught us how to live and showed us how to die. She will be missed by her family and friends.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Mel’s memory to Hospice of the Western Reserve 17876 St. Clair Ave., Cleveland, OH 44110, Ursuline Sisters Ministry Fund 2600 Lander Rd., Pepper Pike, OH 44124 or Sisters of Notre Dame 13000 Auburn Rd., Munson Twp., OH 44024.
Mass of Christian Burial Wednesday August 3, 2016 at St Clare Catholic Church at 10:30 AM. Entombment following at All Souls Mausoleum. Please join us to pay tribute to and celebrate the life of Mell at THE DeJOHN FUNERAL HOME & CELEBRATIONS CENTER OF CHESTERLAND 12811 CHILLICOTHE ROAD (Rt. 306, just south of Mayfield Rd.) MONDAY 5-8 PM and TUESDAY 1-3 and 5-8 PM.
Charity Name: HOSPICE OF THE WESTERN RESERVE INC
Charity EIN: 341256377