It is with the heaviest of hearts we share the passing of our mother, Lina Coscia. Known to many as Leigh, she was actually born with the name Pasqualina. She arrived in the world on December 31, 1932 to proud parents, Laura Morrone and Girolomo deSimone, who were both Italian immigrants from the small mountain village Carlantino, located in Southern Italy and came to America because they were hungry, not for food, but for opportunity and a better life. She and her older brother Peter held a close sibling bond until his passing in 1995. They spoke just about daily and saw each other as often as possible. She and Peter were surrounded by extended family and life was idyllic, as she spoke fondly of the festive life her uncles lived, such as when her uncles, who worked on the Brooklyn docks brought home a monkey for a family pet. Leigh was a Dyker Heights girl until the end, and she never forgot her Brooklyn roots, staying connected to a wide circle of friends long after she left Brooklyn. Growing up in a family of tailors, she was crafty and nimble with her fingers, skills she passed on to her children and grandchildren. After graduating from New Utrecht High School, Leigh went to NYU for a year before heading off work for the Air Force in lower Manhattan. Leigh met the love of her life, Fred Coscia, a Bronx native, at the Sons of Carlantino Annual Dinner on September 18, 1955. They were engaged in September of 1956 and were married on May 18, 1957. Their wedding at St Bernadette's Church and subsequent reception at the famed St. George Hotel's RoofTop Garden was a spectacular affair. While all their friends honeymooned in the Poconos, Fred and Leigh embarked on a trip to California, thus sparking their love of travel. In their mid-forties, and with three children to support, our parents took the risk and opened F & L Deli located on the Village Green in Bedford Village, NY. While in Bedford, they became an integral part of the community, supporting many local organizations and was well loved by all. A smile would always come to them as they spoke of their time as business owners. At 50, Leigh decided to complete her college degree and after graduation taught nursery school for over 10 years at the Rose Y in Mt. Vernon. They were always proud of their three children, Joyce, married to Lenny, Renee, married to John, and of course Ricky. They adored and cherished their three grandchildren, Emily, Jake and Rebecca, and relished every moment they could spend together, always providing an unlimited supply of fun activities, as well as Froot Loops and Klondike Bars. Leigh was a champion of mothers, led a life of service and was dedicated to her Catholic faith. The last of the neighborhood Legendary Chinese Food Ladies, our mother was a PTA queen, hosted the ultimate birthday parties and never forgot her civic duties. As a member of the League of Women Voters, she was a district leader for the Board of Elections until she was about 80, in the early days, receiving a police escort to bring ballot totals to White Plains. In the eyes of her children this was super cool. While they loved to travel the world and had a close circle of friends, ultimately, it was the importance of family that meant the most to our parents. They both demonstrated for us the importance of family ties beyond just the 5 of us. Our parents loved the opera and delighted in the opportunity to go to The Met at Lincoln Center. Our house was often filled with the music of La Boheme or La Traviata. Proud of their Italian heritage, they held family in great regard and always displayed honor and respect for those who came before them. Over the years they journeyed extensively throughout the United States, went on 17 cruises, traveled to Europe seven times, including trips to Italy, Spain, Portugal, England, France, Holland and Monaco. In addition, they have visited the Middle East and Egypt. Leigh was well loved by all who knew her. She left an indelible mark on everyone she met and we know the great influence she had on many, many lives. She will be greatly missed by all. In honor of Leigh we ask that donations be made to March of Dimes, an organization she spent countless hours volunteering for over many years.
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