Irene Menichelli Martin of Binghamton passed away in her 99th year at Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital on April 26 ,2021. She was predeceased by her husband Patrick J. (Martone) Martin, her parents Anthony and Rufina Menichelli; brothers Fred Menichelli, Anthony Menichelli Jr.; sisters Mary Menichelli Martin, Theresa Menichelli Benek, Frances Menichelli, daughter-in-law Catherine LeStrange Martin. She is survived by her son Thomas (Martone) Martin; daughters Lynn Martone, Rita Martin; grandchildren Marino Panaro, Lauren Van Houten, Nina Panaro; great grandchildren Ava Van Houten, Erich Van Houten, Marianna Panaro; special niece/Goddaughter Fran Hornick, along with several beloved nieces and nephews.
This lovely little lady was intelligent, kind, talented, and unassuming. She was born to music loving Italian immigrant parents in the 7th Ward of Binghamton in what was a vibrant predominately Italian-American neighborhood. She would reside in that very same neighborhood for the remainder of her long and fruitful life.
She was employed with the NYS Court System retiring as Broome County Commissioner of Jurors after 30 plus years of dedicated service. She will however, forever be associated with her remarkable musical career. With a marvelous God given talent she began her formal music education on the piano at 7 years of age and by her early teens was being featured weekly on local radio, the primary media of that bygone era. Throughout the ensuing decades she would perform in a vast and varied multitude of musical venues in a time when a far more populated Triple Cities offered a thriving world of live entertainment. To those old enough, she will be remembered as the Christmas organist at Fowler’s Department Store majestically perched and spinning above the stairs at the main entrance greeting the throngs of holiday shoppers with her seemingly unlimited repertoire of seasonal renditions. And, for well over a half century, she was the church organist and Musical Ministry Director at St. Mary of the Assumption Church where she herself had been Baptized, married, and a lifelong parishioner. And as a final testament to her artistic durability, she performed a series of solo concerts on the Link Theatre organ at the Forum well into her 80s and then into her 90s performed as the Roberson Mansion pianist for their annual Home For The Holidays events.
Our Mother possessed the rare combination of talent along with a discernable spirit of humility which she exhibited in her everyday life, her work, and her music. We her family fully recognize the precious gift of having had her in our lives for such a long and fulfilling lifetime and rightfully give thanks to our Lord and Savior for this profound blessing having been bestowed on us.
A mass of Christian burial will be offered at St Mary of the Assumption Church at 9:30am on Saturday May 1, 2021, with a private burial to follow. Arrangements are with Albert J. DeMarco.
In lieu of flowers, we ask that you please donate in her name to her favorite Charity: The Shriners Hospitals For Children. And to those of you who knew her or about her and are reading this, we ask that you please take a moment in these difficult times to sit back and listen to a favorite song or piece of music and quietly reflect upon the profound gift of music, the gift with which our loving Mother lighted our world.
Mom, may choirs of angels greet you into paradise. ”Riposare in Pace.”
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