Diane and I just returned a few days ago from a week up in NJ visiting my brother and sister-in-law. Last Saturday we drove over to Fleetwood, PA to meet relatives I didn’t know we had until a few years ago from the Lucarelli side of the family. We drove over to meet Chris Lucarelli and his wife Julie, his mother Grace, his brother John, and John’s daughter, Amber. As an extra added bonus we got to meet Elsie, an honorary Lucarelli, and Grace’s friend of 62 years. I discovered Chris in my research about 2 years ago, and then found him on Facebook. I then became friends with Julie, Grace, John and Amber. It was an amazing day. It was like we had known each other for years. You know how you feel comfortable and at ease when you are with family. That is exactly how it was that day. I wish we had more time to spend there. Grace and Elsie were the highlight of the day. I believe these two are inseparable, and they are hilarious! They take jabs at each other, and they laugh at everything. I love them! There are a lot more Lucarelli family members living in that area, and I hope to meet most of them some day, but I couldn’t think of a more perfect way to start than with this part of the family!
On Sunday we drove up to Paramus, NJ to see my cousin Kathy Chinigo and her family. My cousin Robert was there also. This was a special trip also because I don’t get up to NJ often, and when I do I usually don’t get to go around and visit that much. In the last 40 years I’ve only seen Kathy a handful of times, and I’ve only seen Robert once, for a short while, at my Uncle Billy’s funeral. It was great spending an afternoon with them again. Frank, Kathy’s husband is amazing. He’s 68, and he spent most of his time running around the yard, in the heat, playing with his two grandsons. It rained a good bit of the time that we were in NJ, but God graced us with two beautiful sunny days to visit family!
I was also hoping to meet, on this trip, a few more relatives. John Justin Calcagni and his daughter, Lauren, who live in NY. John, who is named after my father and my Uncle Justy, used to work with both of them. Another relative that I found that I wanted to meet is Silvana Cornelio. Silvana is the granddaughter of my Great Aunt Anna Scocchia Cornelio. Anna is my grandfather’s sister and she came to America with him. She got married here and then moved back to Italy. Until I discovered Silvana, that was all of the information that I had on her. Silvana grew up in Italy, but lives in MA now. I was hoping to be able to go up there to meet her, but there just wasn’t enough time this trip. Hopefully the next time.