Laura C. (Barbosa) Ferraguto of Woburn & Lexington, Dec. 11. Beloved wife of the late Salvatore “Sam”. Loving mother of Andrew & his wife Jacqueline of Brewster, Joseph & his wife Dolores of Katy, TX, Philip & his wife of Sharon of Plymouth, Paul & his wife Kathy of Woburn, Thomas & his wife Sonja of Salisbury. Mother-in-law of the late Maria. Laura is also survived by 12 grandchildren, 14 great grandchildren and 2 great great grandchildren. Sister of the late Irene Crowley, Mary O’Donnell, Bella Ribeiro & Emily Scalfati. Visiting hours will be held at the Edward V Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn St., BURLINGTON (Exit 34 off Rt. 128/95 Woburn side) on Sunday, Dec. 16 from 1-4 p.m. Funeral Services will be at the Funeral Home on Monday, Dec. 17 at 11 a.m. Burial to follow in Westview Cemetery, Lexington. Laura’s family would like to express our sincere and profound thanks to the management and staff of her home for the last 5 years, New Horizon at Choate. The family would like donations in Laura’s name to be made to New Horizon at Choate, 21 Warren Ave, Woburn, MA 01801. For directions, obituary & online guestbook see www.sullivanfuneralhome.net
Eulogy by Andrew Ferraguto
Ask anyone who knew mom to describe her in one word and they would say that she was feisty. And indeed she was a woman who was passionate about life, lived on her own terms and did not suffer fools gladly. Feisty she was.
As the oldest of five boys. Mom would have expected me to write about her now as I did for my dad eight years ago. Mom was first generation American, the youngest of five daughters of Joseph and Filomena Barbosa , immigrants from the Azores.
From these humble beginnings our family took shape and Mom was intensely proud of her progeny. Just look around and see her legacy, a family of artists, musicians, professors and scientists and who knows what her grand and great grandchildren may yet accomplish. Laura's favorite phrase was," I expect great things of you."
Mom loved my dad more than anything in the world and she truly "stood by her man" . He could do no wrong in her mind. When asked the secret of how their marriage survived 63 years, she would answer, " I don't allow any weapons in the house. Now, That's feisty.
Family was everything to mom and she did everything in her power to keep it whole and together. She made sure her boys maintained strong relationships with one another and she embraced our wives in such a loving and inclusive manner that it put everyone at ease and we all felt love and acceptance. All of her daughters-in-law's loved her as much as her sons.
One of her favorite ploys was what we call "kitchen diplomacy" .When she perceived of a rift between brothers she would call each of us and demand we come to her house to deal with some sort of calamity and when we got there, the brother that you were angry with was already there brought by the same invented pretense. "Now sit down and eat because if you're breaking bread, you can not be angry with each other". Take note, it actually works.
Mom had five sons and cousin Kathy was the daughter she so desired. She adored Kathy and Kathy reciprocated with unending love and devotion.
The Ferraguto family was Laura's pride and joy, she loved fiercely and expected good things from everyone of us.
Preparing a dinner for 12 or 14 people is not an easy task and I know how exhausting it is to put together Thanksgiving dinner. But Mom did this every Sunday week after week. Everyone and I mean everyone had an open invitation, no reservations needed. It was a huge spread. Ravioli’s, lasagna, roast beef, turkey and on and on. It was a restaurant operation all the way down to a deli slicer for the roast. These incredible Sunday meals gave all of our children a sense of family and togetherness they will never forget.
Her passion for cooking and serving became her crowning glory when she began working as a "lunch lady" for Lexington schools first at Muzzey Jr. High then later at Clarke Jr High. She brought innovation, creativity and passion to a public school setting and it wasn't long before she was put in charge of the school cafeteria. What she did in the schools was legendary .
She was baking fresh bread and rolls every day and rumor has it that town employees would schedule their visits to the school to coincide with her schedule for pan pizza . She took special care of her faculty and staff, baking muffins and making special dishes that catered to their dietary needs. To sum it up, when Mom retired, the school honored her with a retirement party worthy of a departing dignitary. It was a big deal, everyone attended, teachers, school principal, family and friends. There's a scrap book that chronicles this special event and Mom took enormous pride in sharing it.
Her last year's at New Horizons were wonderful. It wasn't long before she found her place and she quickly made friends and the staff welcomed her, cared for her and filled her final years with warmth and love. As good fortune would have it, Mom's beloved sister Emily Mom followed her to New Horizons and they were able to spend there last year's together kind of completing the cirlcle of life.
Mom endeared herself to all, her generosity was spontaneous and boundless, unfortunately, equally typical her generosity included giving away those same gifts which we all had given so much time and effort to make especially for her. She would often ask for something with the thought in mind give to someone else. If you didn't want it regifted, you had better have it monogrammed.
Then there were those easy take aways like "Kathy, I love that sweater you're wearing" and Kathy takes it off her back and gives it to Mom. Speaking of easy take aways; Mom ran away with the bingo games at New Horizons, nobody stood a chance against her. She would proudly display an enormous wad of cash winnings that would put anyone to shame.
She will live in our memories and our hearts forever and speaking for all of my brothers, we will always be proud to call ourselves the sons of Laura Ferraguto.