Elena Hersey, 84: Lifelong love of reading and learning

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PORTLAND — Elena Hersey, 84, died Feb. 13 at St Joseph’s Manor.

Born and raised in Portland, she was the eighth child of nine born to Loretto and Beatrice Piacitelli.

After her husband Everett died at an early age, she began cooking at local schools and church cafeterias.

She loved cooking and enjoyed teaching others how to make her specialties, like eggplant parmigiana, or Italian and wine cookies.

After her health began to fail, she moved from her beloved home on the Eastern Prom to St. Joseph’s Manor, where she made many friends.

During that time she won three blue ribbons from the Cumberland County Fair for her crocheted hanging towels, cotton dishcloths.

She was a loving, supportive mother and grandmother, and a loyal and generous friend with a great sense of humor.

She was predeceased by her husband, Everett, a sister, Pasqualina “Pat” Grimaldi, and three brothers, Martin, Tony, and Johnny Piacitelli.

Surviving are her two children, daughter Christine A. Hersey and her partner Irene Dufour of Portland, and son Michael J. Hersey and his wife Martha of Casco; four sisters, Philomena “Mae” Carlista of Portland, Rose “Roxie” Piacitelli and Mary Grimaldi, both of South Portland, and Yolanda Hunter and her husband Lawrence of Millinocket; and one granddaughter, Traci Crouanas and her husband Kevin of Windham.

Memorial services were held last week.

Arrangements are by Conroy-Tully Crawford Funeral Home, 172 State St., Portland.

Memorial donations may be made to the Sisters of Mercy Retirement Fund, 605 Stevens Ave., Portland, ME 04103.

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