ORANGE- Virginia M. “Ginny” (Colo) Porcari, 93, died on Saturday, March 7, 2020 at Quabbin Valley Healthcare in Athol, MA.
Ginny was born in Orange, MA on August 7, 1926 to the late Vito B. and Annie M. (Maestri) Colo.
Ginny grew up on "old East Main Street" in Orange, a neighborhood with many Italian families. She married Michael Porcari on August 9,1947, and they lived and raised their family on Wheeler Avenue, in the house that Mike built. Ginny was a devoted wife, mother, and grandmother. She always put her family first and loved spending time with her children and grandchildren. Her greatest attribute was her love of life, which was reflected in absolutely everything she did. Ginny always said that she never had a bad day, and that she had a perfect life. She was so thankful that she grew up in a loving family, married the man of her dreams, had four wonderful children, and had a job she absolutely loved.
Ginny studied tap dance with the late Stanley Brown in Boston and went on to teach dance classes in Athol, Orange, and Barre for over 40 years. She taught countless numbers of children and teens the joy of tap, ballet, and ballroom dancing, always with an uplifting spirit. Many students and friends remember that she not only taught them to dance, but that she brought an atmosphere of acceptance and set a positive tone. She also listened, supported, and encouraged them through a variety of life circumstances.
Ginny was also a gifted choreographer. She worked on Variety Shows and other productions at Mahar Regional High School, including classics such as Fiddler on the Roof, Annie Get Your Gun, Annie, Godspell, Once upon a Mattress, Babes in Toyland, South Pacific, and The Sound of Music. For many years, she produced Dress Rehearsal, in Orange, a show that highlighted the musical and vocal talents of local residents.
Ginny was a singer and actress, as well. She performed in musical theatre productions at "The Mount" (Mount Wachusett Community College) and the 1794 Meetinghouse in New Salem. Her favorite role was Dolly in Hello Dolly. She said that any aspiring actress of her time dreamed of playing that role. She said "coming down the stairs dressed as Dolly made me feel like a queen." She loved singing and leant her lovely soprano voice to the church choir for decades. She frequently was found leading others in song, in groups large and small. Ginny tap danced until the very end and was never shy about performing the "military step" for anyone willing to watch.
Ginny loved Orange and enriched community life in many ways, while serving on town committees, volunteering, and organizing numerous events and fundraisers. She did this and taught dancing while never missing her children's ball games and school events. She was a member of St. Mary's Women's Club, the Trentino Club of New England, and The Orange Senior Citizen's Club.
Throughout her life, Ginny was always up for an adventure. Her family remembers trips to Virginia and Myrtle Beach when the kids were young, a cross-country camping trip to
Yellowstone National Park in the family van, a variety of cruises (she always performed at talent night!), and visits with cherished family in Italy.
Ginny's exuberant spirit remained throughout her life. Even recently, when asked how she was doing, her reply was always, "wonderful!" which was reflected by the sparkle in her eye and head held up!
Ginny was preceded in death by her husband, Mike, and her parents Vito and Annie. She will be forever missed by her children and their spouses, Diane, Mike (Nancy), John (Marggi), and Carol, and grandchildren, Elizabeth and Casey Porcari. She also leaves her sister Nancy (Bill) Howell, her brother Vic (Mary Anne) Colo, and her dear niece and nephew, Anne Colo and Tom (Sonia) Colo and their children. She will be fondly remembered by her beloved family members in Italy, the Trentini, Cigalotti, and Colo families. She will also be remembered by a large "extended family" of friends, former students, fellow performers, and caregivers.
This past year, Ginny was honored by the community with the dedication of the stage in the Orange Town Hall in her name.
Memorial donations in Ginny's name may be made to: Town Hall Restoration Committee, “Lighting Fund”, Town of Orange, 6 Prospect Street, Orange, MA 01364 or to St. Mary’s Women’s Club, ATTN: Pam Bouthillier, 19 Congress Street, Orange, MA 01364.
Memorial services are being planned while our country wisely and patiently rides out the coronavirus.
Burial will be private in South Cemetery, Orange.
The family is exceedingly grateful for your understanding, love, and support, and looks forward to celebrating Ginny's life with you in the near future.
Witty’s Funeral Home, 158 South Main Street, Orange, is assisting the family.
You may offer your sympathy online at WWW.WITTYFUNERALHOME.COM
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