Carmella Konkey, 82, passed away peacefully at 11:36 pm on Friday March 24, 2017 in her home surrounded by her loving family. She bravely fought a three year battle with advanced kidney cancer.
Carmella was born on a June 18, 1934 in Niles, Michigan to the late Francesco and Catherine (Mazzotta) Frucci. She was born in her family home in the immigrant neighborhood of Dickereel. She lived the majority of her life in the neighborhood where she was born surrounded by family and friends who immigrated from Italy. Along with her parents, she was also preceded in death by her sister Anna Franz, brother Antonio Frucci, and her sister Barbara Chmiel.
In 1952, Carmella was crowned Miss Niles. She was always humble about the honor; she was just as beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside. After her high school graduation in 1952, she worked as a Billing Supervisor at National Standard for 20 years before retiring.
On July 26, 1958 at St. Mary’s Church in Niles, Michigan she married Daniel Konkey who survives. In addition to her husband, Carmella is survived by her daughter, Linda (Dr. Frank) Downey of Mequon, Wisconsin; her son, David (Angel) Konkey of South Bend, Indiana; her seven grandchildren, Patrick Downey, Catherine Downey, Christina (fiancée Ryan Vidrine) Konkey, Matthew Konkey, Nicole Konkey, Sarah Konkey, and Mia Konkey.
Carmella was a loving, faithful, and devoted wife, mother, and Nana. She had a deep faith in God that was her guiding force for loving and serving others, especially her family. Her husband and family came first and she prayed many novenas for them. She always did big and little things with great love. Carmella’s volunteer work was very important to her. Among her many volunteer activities, Carmella served on the Niles Service League, the Altar Rosary Society, and Funeral Luncheon Committees at St. Mary’s Church. To Carmella, food is love. Not only did she share her talents for canning tomatoes and making many Italian food specialties with her family and friends, but she was also a Meals on Wheels volunteer for many years.
She was a dedicated fan of the Detroit Red Wings, the Detroit Pistons, the University of Notre Dame Athletics, Middlebury College Football, Amherst College Field Hockey, and the Chicago Cubs. She was thrilled to see her beloved Cubbies win the 2016 World Series.
We wish to thank Carmella’s home health aides, especially Gwenn, Lucy, and Cami. We would also like to thank the staff at Caring Circle Hospice, especially Allison, Ashley, James, and Sue. Their tender and devoted care allowed her to remain in her home.
Visitation will be 4-7pm on Thursday, March 30, 2017 at HALBRITTER WICKENS FUNERAL HOME 615 E. Main St. A Rosary will be Prayed at 6:30pm in the funeral home. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 11am on Friday, March 31, 2017 in St. Mary’s Catholic Church. Burial will follow at Calvary Cemetery.
Memorial Contributions may be made to the St. Mary’s Catholic School or The Christian Service Center at St. Mary’s ℅ St. Mary’s Church 219 S. State St. Niles, Michigan 49120.
Una mama italiana e’ una benedizione di Dio.
“An Italian mother is a blessing from God.”