Joanna Francis “Jennie” Zaroda 1926 - 2021
ZARODA, Joanna “Jennie” passed away peacefully in her 96th year at Linhaven Home for the Aged with family by her side believing “it is God’s will” and “the Blessed Lady will take care of me”. Jennie was a devout Catholic who often prayed the Rosary to give her comfort and strength throughout her life. Jennie is joining her husband Kon who passed away in 1998. They met attending kindergarten at the old St. Joseph School on Facer Street, it was love at first sight and they married twenty years later. Jennie was a devoted wife and mother who loved her husband and children with all her heart and was an inspiration to everyone with her strong work ethic to compliment her openly honest and caring approach to life. Jennie is predeceased by daughter, Connie Grosshuesch (2011), survived by son-in-law Mark Grosshuesch; son, Vincent; daughter, Anne (William) Huibers; son, Joseph (Tracy) Zaroda. Nana will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by her grandchildren, Jennifer, Jonathan Grosshuesch; Jason, Ryan (Tiffany) Huibers; Camille, Celine Zaroda and her two great grandchildren Madison, Carter Huibers.
Jennie was predeceased by her parents Anthony and Josephine Presto who emigrated from Italy in the mid 1920s and predeceased siblings Mary (Gino) Capitano; Santa (Louis) Guerriero; Rose (James) Gallagher; Carmen Redman and Tony (Audrey) Presto. Predeceased by her brother-in-law Mike (Helen) Zaroda. Jennie will be fondly remembered by her brother- in -laws Lawrence Redman; Paul Majcher and her sister-in-law Jenny Majcher and her nieces, nephews and family members. It is a little-known fact the largest Catholic Church in St. Catharines, St. Alfred Parish was built on the Presto family farm. Jennie left her home on March 11, 2020 for a doctor’s appointment and did not return home. The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic denied Jennie her greatest wish of returning home. The family home was Jennie’s domain and she often sat on the front porch greeting others. The family has asked the funeral home to stop on the way to the church in front of the family home and her adjacent house she shared with the Presto Family growing up on the farm for the last time.
Jennie was a full-time “Domestic Engineer” who did it all at home, sewing, knitting, crocheting, gardening and managed all household finances. Jennie excelled at cooking and baking. Just ask all family, friends, priests, and bishops who have enjoyed a culinary experience prepared by Jennie. Jennie was employed as a part-time “keeper of the kitchen” at St. Alfred Parish Rectory, Jennie prepared meals for the clergy for over 50 years until she decided to retire at 85 years of age. Jennie was a long-time member (over 60 years) of the Catholic Women’s League.
In 2003, our Holy Father, Pope John Paul ll announced the presentation of Papal Honours to some members of the church community for their outstanding contribution to the life of the Diocesan church. Our Holy Father awarded Jennie the medal Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice for her outstanding service to the church and to the Parish of St. Alfred for over 50 years. Jennie was acknowledged for being an active, reliable, dedicated, long-standing servant to the priests of St. Alfred’s Parish. The papal distinction medal dates back to 1888, until 1993, the medal was the highest honour that could be obtained by women in the church. Jennie was a very humble woman who throughout life was always giving and doing for others without expecting anything in return. It was truly an Honour bestowed upon Jennie which was seldom if ever shared with others.
Special thanks to all the staff on the Dalhousie Ward of Linhaven Home for the Aged for their compassionate treatment and care through unprecedented times relating to Covid-19. Jennie was a remarkable and resilient woman who faced and overcame many adversities throughout her lifetime starting with the Great Depression and never complained, choosing to thank God for all His blessings. Heartfelt thank you to, cousin, Connie Sacco; friends, Jesse Clutterbuck and, Rita Woodhead; friends of McQuaby Lake, Peter and Nellie Bolwerk and, Lillian Fife, for your regular visits, phone calls, cards and all the quality time you spent with Jennie. Jennie loved you as family.
The family will receive family and friends at the George Darte Funeral Chapel, 585 Carlton Street, St. Catharines, ON L2M 4Y1. Visiting hours Friday, September 10, 2021, from 3-5p.m. & 7-9 p.m. Vigil prayers will be held on Friday at 8:00 p.m. in the funeral home. The Funeral Liturgy will be celebrated at St. Alfred’s Church, 272 Vine Street on Saturday, September 11, 2021, at 9:30 a.m. The Rite of Committal will take place in Victoria Lawn Cemetery following the mass. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Linhaven Home for the Aged or a charity of your choice.
Covid restrictions are still in effect, everyone must wear a mask and a registration is required to attend the Funeral Mass, please phone the funeral home at 905-937-4444 to secure your attendance and avoid registration at the church. Capacity is limited to 33% capacity or approximately 300 persons.