Carmela Christine (Briguglio) Castellucci

October 13, 1921 ~ August 6, 2018 (age 96)

Carmela Christine Briguglio Castellucci

Carmela Briguglio Castellucci laid down her burdens early on the morning of August 6, 2018, at Brookdale Retirement Community in Durham, NC. She was born to Joseph Briguglio and Michelina Barca Briguglio on October 13, 1921 in Hoboken, NJ.  A woman of strong will, she was determined to the end.

Carmela was preceded in death by her parents, by her beloved husband of 67 years, Frank, and by her brothers, Carmine “Sonny” Briguglio and Rocco Briguglio.

She is survived by her daughter, Francine and husband Dennis Oakes, her son John and wife Alison Castellucci, her grandson Bryan and wife Carla Castellucci, her granddaughter Kristen Castellucci, her grandson Michael Castellucci, her grandson Joshua and wife Aletheia Castellucci, her grandson Matthew and wife Laura Castellucci, her grandsons Andrew and Nathan Castellucci, and her great-grandchildren Anthony, Dominique, Gabriel and John Castellucci.

Carmela loved her family, church and her profession in Nursing with boundless determination, and backed it with hard work.

She spoiled her family with incomparable cooking which never met her standards, but never disappointed ours.  When she asked whether you wanted seconds, a “no” got one scoop, and a “yes” got two or three.  She was never more than a phone call away when help was needed.  Of equal importance, she was a fervent pray warrior, lifting her family members in prayer each day.

Given her druthers, Carmela would have ironed clothes or cleaned house, and her pristine home and meticulously prepared clothing showed it.  She embraced the theme, “cleanliness is next to godliness.”  If she gave you a bath, you could count on a layer of skin going with it.  If you got a cut or scrape, you could guarantee no dirt would be left inside, before it was medicated and dressed.

Carmela would burst with pride when speaking of her family, whether the education or accomplishments of her siblings, children, grandchildren or great-grandchildren.  She continually urged us on to further achievement.  Furthermore, she always enjoyed the performances of her grandchildren in the musical productions and concerts at Cresset Christian Academy.

A resident of Clinton, NC for 40 years, Carmela faithfully served her church, Immaculate Conception.  Whether reading Scripture, cleaning with the Altar Society, or serving a meal at a pot luck dinner, she was ready to minister.  The church, in turn, showered their love on her, selflessly coming to her aid as her husband suffered through his final years.  They moved to Durham during this period to be closer to her children and to utilize the advanced medicine available in the Triangle area, but she always missed her church family.

As a young woman, Carmela was determined to become a nurse, despite her father’s warnings against it.  An excellent student, she was named “Chemistry Queen” of her senior class in high school,  then poured her intellect into the study of medicine.  She graduated at the top of three nursing classes in 1947.

While raising her family she served in a doctor’s office, volunteered with the American Red Cross, and worked in various hospitals.  As the medical expert of her extended family, she was called whenever there was a crisis.  She sat with many family and friends during their final hours.

After arriving in Clinton, Carmela’s excellence and attention to detail was recognized as she worked her way up to Floor Supervisor, then Director of Nursing at what was then Sampson Memorial Hospital.  She developed many of the policies and procedures used by the nursing staff, and demanded the same dedication of her staff that she gave herself.  There was always room to improve, for herself and for her coworkers, and she was quick to point to those areas.

Carmela was tireless.  After work in the evenings, she would cook, prepare her uniform and nursing shoes for the next day, and then study her continuing education course material.  On the weekends she would clean house, do laundry, and squeeze in a bit more studying.

Carmela loved both studying and teaching the latest nursing material.  She taught nursing students at Sampson Tech until she reached eighty years old.  Her students always knew that she expected their best efforts, no less than she expected of herself.

A visitation with a rosary service will be held Thursday, August 9, 2018 from 6 PM to 8 PM, at Crumpler-Honeycutt Funeral Home, 118 Fayetteville St., Clinton, NC  28328.  A funeral mass will be held at 10 AM, Friday, August 10, 2018 at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church, 104 E John St., Clinton, NC with interment to follow in Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church Cemetery at 211 Irwin Drive,  Newton Grove, NC. 

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you make a donation to the Edith Bradshaw Scholarship, which recognizes outstanding, local high school students.  Please contact Michael Mozingo for scholarship details, 996 Naylor St. Clinton, NC, 28328-3210, phone # 910-299-0759.  Funeral arrangements will be handled by Crumpler-Honeycutt of Clinton, NC, 1-910-592-2066.

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