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Rosemary Ann Orzechowski

rosemary orzechowski
Rosemary was born on June 19, 1929, in the Bronx, New York to Peter and Irene Bellina. She was the middle of three siblings. Her oldest sister, Rita, succumbed to cancer at age 62. Her younger brother, Peter, passed away earlier this year at age 78. Rosemary became familiar with sacrifice and struggle early in her life, growing up during the Great Depression and experiencing World War II as a young adult. After graduation from high school, Rosemary became employed at Bell Telephone, where she worked as a billing clerk. She met her future husband, Bernard Orzechowski, at a CYO dance on Memorial Day weekend in 1959. She always insisted that they found love because she was the only Irish-Italian there who could dance the Polka. They were married on May 14, 1960, at Holy Rosary Church in the Bronx. Rosemary moved out of her childhood home to live with her husband as newlyweds for two years in Jersey City, New Jersey. They returned to the Bronx after the birth of their son, Joseph, in 1961. Rosemary became a homemaker, while her husband worked as a lithographer. She experienced many years of struggle and challenge as Bernard endured day and night shift work punctuated by periods of temporary and prolonged unemployment. Rosemary's Catholic faith was a profound source of strength for her throughout her life, particularly when she lost twins within a few hours of being born on Christmas Day, 1962. She gave birth to her daughter, Mary, in 1964 and suffered tragedy again on Easter Sunday, 1966, when she lost another child within a few hours of birth. Rosemary returned to the world of work in 1975 and was employed by the New York City Board of Education as a school aide until her retirement and her cross-country move to Temecula in 1992 to start a new life with her husband as grandparents. Rosemary was a active parishioner at Holy Rosary and St. Ann churches in the Bronx, a tradition that continued with her involvement in various ministries at St. Catherine's (catechist, Eucharist minister). Rosemary had a special devotion to the Blessed Mother and attended daily mass for many years. She had a vibrant prayer life, prayed the Rosary daily, and always believed that 'things happen for a reason.'

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