Catherine “Katie” Pierro died on Wednesday night, June 29, 2022, at the age of 94 at Acadia Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation in Riverhead, N.Y., where she had been living since September 2020.
She was born Caterina Carmela Tripodi on Tuesday, 19 July 1927, in The Bronx, N.Y., daughter of Alfonso Rocco Rosario Tripodi (8 Oct 1879, Polistena, Calabria, Italy, to 1 May 1955, St. Albans, Queens, N.Y.) and Natalia Carini (9 May 1891, Salerno, Italy, to 3 Oct. 1977, Hampton Bays, N.Y). She will be buried at Sacred Heart of Jesus and Mary Cemetery in Southampton, N.Y., together with her parents and her late husband, Joseph Anthony Pierro (2 April 1927, Ozone Park, Queens, to 9 April 2019, Southampton).
Katie grew up during the Great Depression and World War II. When she was young the Tripodi family moved all around Manhattan and she often told stories of her childhood and the adventures that she and her siblings and cousins had. Eventually, by the time she was 12, the family settled in at 308 East 120th St. in “Italian Harlem.” She was the fourth youngest of 16 siblings and half-siblings (excluding those who did not survive infancy).
By the age of 12 she and Joseph Pierro became a couple, and after a long teenage romance they were married in September 1948, at the age of 21, at Holy Rosary Church in Manhattan. Their four children were all born in New York City, and the Pierro family lived in Manhattan; St. Albans, Queens; Manhattan; and finally, from 1961, in Flanders, Riverhead, N.Y. She and Joseph “Chubby” Pierro were married for over 70 years when he died at age 92 in 2019. Catherine Tripodi Pierro loved her children, and while her husband did whatever he could to earn money to support the family, her job was to love and take care of all her children. That is what she devoted her life to.
“Kay” loved music, from Frank Sinatra to Johnny Mathis to the Beatles. And in spite of her major hearing loss, she danced the night away at age 90, moving to the thump of the beat at the wedding of her son Joe Pierro to Katherine Steinmuller in 2017.
By the 1960s Katie and most of her brothers and sisters had settled in the Riverhead/Hampton Bays area of Long Island, and as adults they loved to get together, tell stories and play games while all their children ran around and had a great time together. And when she and her sisters started laughing, watch out — it was like an earthquake that was hard to quell.
Catherine Tripodi Pierro is survived by one sister, Lena Cestaro (Pasqualina Tripodi, age 98); a sister-in-law, Alberta “Tita” Tripodi; and her children, Louis Pierro and his wife, Maureen Fahey, of Milton, Mass.; Joseph Pierro and his wife, Katherine Steinmuller, of Westhampton Beach, N.Y., Lorraine Ann Pierro of Riverhead and Robert Pierro and his fiancée, Robin Mudge, of Flanders. She is also survived by her grandchildren, Joseph, Natalie, Catherine, Evan, Jordan and Shana Pierro; two great-grandsons, Ewan and Gareth Thomas; many nieces and nephews and their families on both the Tripodi and Pierro sides; and so many other relatives in the New York and New Jersey area, as well as those in Italy that she never got the chance to meet. She will be remembered, loved and missed by all who knew her.
The family will receive visitors Thursday, July 7, from 4 to 8 p.m. at Tuthill-Mangano Funeral Home in Riverhead. A funeral Mass will take place at 9:30 a.m. Friday, July 8, at St. John the Evangelist R.C. Church in Riverhead, followed by interment at Sacred Hearts of Mary and Jesus Cemetery in Southampton.
This is a paid notice.