Marie Anna Pantatello Spinner of Chapel Hill, NC, formerly of Mount Vernon and Port Chester, NY died on April 2, 2023. She was born in Udine, Italy on February 9, 1922, the eldest daughter of the late Angelina (Chiopris) and Michael Pantatello.
Marie graduated from A.B. Davis High School, Mt. Vernon, NY with honors and a Double Regents Diploma. Later, as an adult student, she received one of the first Associate of Arts Degree in Library Sciences from Norwalk Community College. During the World War II years, she was employed by Standard Oil Co. of NJ (later Exxon) at Rockefeller Plaza in NYC. She worked in their purchasing department for ten years.
On April 15, 1951, Marie married Daniel L. Spinner of Mount Vernon, NY. In 1959 Marie and Dan moved to Port Chester, NY with their children, Daniel J. and Marianne. Marie and her family became quite active in the community. In addition to being a Cub Scout “Den Mother”, and officer in the Newcomers Club, Marie assisted the county chairman to pioneer a chapter of the Port Chester School Remedial Reading Program. This program helped with early stage reading development for many students and she was a volunteer for many years.
She was a member of the Circolo Culturale Italiano of White Plains, NY and a dedicated member of the Amici del Libro at the Greenwich Public Library in CT, as well as being an active officer of the Byram Garden Club in CT.
Marie retired as an assistant librarian from Greenwich Public Schools. When her husband, Dan, retired, they moved to their new home in Chapel Hill, NC to be closer to family.
Once settled in Chapel Hill, Marie took several writing classes at UNC and Duke University. She wholeheartedly believed that “There [was] always room for learning”. She was a member of the Writers Discussion Group at the Senior Center in Chapel Hill that published: “A Generation Speaks: Voices of the Great Depression”, “Challenges on the Home Front – WWII”, “Lest the Colors Fade”, and “A Beautiful Life”, where many of Marie’s stories and memoirs are published. Her other writings appeared in numerous local magazines and newspapers. Marie was a talented writer and an avid reader who could never pass up “story time” at the local library.
After the passing of her loving husband, Daniel L. Spinner, of sixty-three years, she began a new chapter at Carolina Meadows Senior Living Community. There she took classes in exercise, arts, crafts, was a library volunteer and was a contributor to their publication, “Voices”, where several of her short stories and poems were printed. She was a huge UNC men’s basketball fan!
Marie has been a great inspiration, not only to her family and friends, but to anyone who was lucky enough to meet her.
Marie is survived by her children, Daniel J. Spinner of Middlebury, CT, daughter, Marianne Wheeler (husband Wes) of Chapel Hill, NC and three beloved grandchildren, Matthew Spinner (wife Elizabeth) of Fort Collins, CO, Gregory Wheeler (wife Natalie) of Newport Beach, CA, Erica Wheeler (husband Joshua) of London, UK, and 2 great-grandchildren, Caleb and Merritt Spinner, brother-in-law Armand Tarantelli of Hicksville, NY, and sister-in-law Caroline Pantatello of Levittown, NY, plus numerous nieces and nephews. Also, she is predeceased by her brother, Joseph Pantatello, and sisters Tina Tullo (brother-in-law Eugene) and Ines Tarantelli.
Her visitation will be on Wednesday, April 12, 2023 from 4 – 6 pm at Clements Funeral Home, 1105 Broad St., Durham, NC.
A Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, April 13, 2023 at 2:30 pm at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, 940 Carmichael St., Chapel Hill, NC.
Interment will be held at Quantico National Cemetery for family only on April 14, 2023.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made in Marie’s name, to the American Heart Association or the American Cancer Society.
May she rest in peace in Heaven alongside her husband, Dan.
The family is being assisted by Clements Funeral & Cremation Services, Inc. in Durham. Online condolences may be made at www.clementsfuneralservice.com.
This obituary was originally published by Greenwich Time & Danbury News Times on Apr. 7, 2023.
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