Angela Mary Caruso, 97: Defied all odds

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BRUNSWICK — Angela Mary Caruso, 97, died Jan. 8.

She was the wife of the late Joseph S. Caruso and a long time resident of Everett, Mass. Caruso was born in East Boston, Mass., on March 21, 1915, the daughter of Joseph ad Mary Grilli. She was raised in Everett and graduated from Everett High School in 1933. 

She was afflicted with polio at the age of 18 months and was one of the first survivors of electric shock treatment, which proved to be successful for her disease. Told she would always have difficulties walking, she defied all odds by not only walking and dancing but with extensive travel, white-water rafting and hot-air ballooning into her 80s and 90s.

Caruso graduated with an associate’s degree from Salem State College and ran her own sewing business, specializing in invisible mending. She also retired from the U.S. Postal Service, where she sorted mail for many years and directed the Boston Post Office Choir.

She was a devoted mother, loving grandmother and proud great-grandmother.

A deeply devout Roman Catholic, Caruso was one of the original parishioners of St. Anthony’s Chruch on Oakes Street in Everett.

She is survived by her children Virginia Caruso of Brunswick and John Caruso and his wife, Virginia, of Ocoee, Fla.; two grandchildren, John Caruso of Chicago, and Christy Williams of East Brunswick, N.J.; three great-grandchildren, Ethan Murdock, Catlyn Celeste and Ronan Salvatore Williams; her brother, Joseph M. Grilli and his wife, Jennie; Louisa Grilli; and many nieces and nephews. 

Funeral services were conducted Jan. 11 at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Brunswick. Memorial donations may be made to the St. Charles Borromeo Church, 132 McKeen St., Brunswick, ME 04011.