Nancy V. Calvo of Monroe, Connecticut, formerly of Stamford, Conn., passed away on Friday, November 30 at Meadow Mills Assisted Living in Hamden, Conn. She was born on September 5, 1921 to Pasquale and Maria (Coppola) Melfi. She was the wife of the late Frank L. Calvo.
Nancy was a unique individual, a member of the Greatest Generation. Warren Harding was President of the U.S. A. when she was born; she lived through numerous administrations and even more social changes. All these helped define who she was. Growing up during the deprivations of the Great Depression caused her to set goals to better herself economically, always reaching upward, never backward. Raised as a first generation American by Italian immigrant parents, she, like the rest of us, were jugglers of two distinct cultures, pulled forth by the New World but still gently nudged by the Old World (referred to us as “The Other Side”) She was shaped by the best of both worlds!
Nancy graduated from Stamford High School and shortly thereafter went into Nurse’s Training under the auspices of the U.S. Army Cadet Nurses Program., ready to go into active service if necessary. She earned her R.N. degree from Norwalk Hospital, having trained there and at the New York Presbyterian Hospital .She also modeled uniforms for a local medical publication. After the war, she worked at Stamford Hospital as Head Nurse on the Maternity floor and later did private duty nursing both in Stamford and on Oyster Bay, Long Island. She received numerous accolades for her compassion and excellent care and wore her uniform and cap proudly.
She retired from nursing after her marriage to Frank in 1962 and they spent a beautiful forty-seven years together until his passing in 2005. She and Frank did extensive traveling, having been to Italy and Sicily several times, also the British Isles and Eastern Europe and Holland. Each year they would take Anniversary trips to New York City where they stayed at the same hotel in which they stayed before leaving for their honeymoon voyage to Italy. She resumed her nursing career for a few years, working at the former Smith House Nursing facility in Stamford. She was also active in her parish, Church of the Holy Spirit, teaching catechism and volunteering for special projects. She was ecstatic when one of her offerings was actually sold at one of the bake sales, as she was not widely known for her baking skills ! She would be mercilessly -but lovingly -kidded each time a souffle fell down or a cake rose up - and UP! Perhaps she figured if one teaspoon of baking powder worked well, imagine what four or five would do? However, she was the best cook of Italian cuisine, really shining each year on Christmas Eve where she would expertly turn out a fantastic traditional Neapolitan Feast of the Seven Fishes; it was the best and just like Mama’s, from the escarole and walnuts to the baccala and vegetable stew. She loved cooking for her family. And most of all loved family gatherings and events and she and her beloved Frank were a special presence at each one.
She is survived by her two sisters, Catherine Darling (Richard) and Joanna Melfi. Also nieces and nephews Rick Darling (Kelly Grady); Ryan and Braden Darling; Linda Watson (Robert); Amanda and Brittany Watson; Bill Darling (Vonna Moss); Jim Darling (Kristin White); Carl Taranto; Ray Taranto (Marlene) Anthony (Amber) Taranto; Danny Taranto; Joseph Melfi, Jr.(Mai); Susan Master (David)Jonathan Master (Danielle); Andrew Master; Joseph Melfi, Jr. (Jay); Laura; Julia Melfi; Patrick Melfi (Mary); Nanette Melfi-Graves ; Joseph Melfi-Graves (Kara); Victoria Melfi-Graves; Tyler Melfi-Graves; Carter Melfi-Graves.
Along with her parents and dear husband Frank, she was predeceased by brothers Joseph and Victor Melfi and Mollie Taranto
Calling hours will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, December 7, at the THOMAS M. GALLAGHER FUNERAL HOME 453 Shippan Avenue, Stamford, CT. (203) 359-9999 A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, December 8 at ten-thirty a.m. at the Church of the Holy Spirit, 403 Scofieldtown Road, Stamford; Interment will follow at the Queen of Peace Cemetery, 124 Rockrimmon Road, Stamford.
Family and friends are invited to a luncheon afterwards, at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 507 Shippan Avenue, Stamford.
To send condolances to the family, please visit www.gallagherfuneralhome.com