Lena Ann (Coco) Mazzei

Lena Ann (Coco) Mazzei

Aug 22, 1920 – Feb 24, 2017

Preceded in death by husband, James Mazzei. Survived by children: James Mazzei (Mary Anne), Patrick Mazzei, John Mazzei (Debbie), and Mary Berner (Mark); nine grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; brothers, Tom Coco and Joe Coco.

The family will receive friends Sunday, March 5th from 3pm to 5pm, with VIGIL SERVICE at 5pm at the Bel Air Chapel. MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL Monday, March 6th at 10am at Mary Our Queen Catholic Church. Interment, Calvary Cemetery. For memorials, the family prefers Masses or donations to Alzheimer’s Association or Diabetes Education Center.

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Born on August 22, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska, Lena died peacefully on February 24, 2017 at the age of 96 at Louisville Care Center.  She was preceded in death by her husband, James J. Mazzei; parents, James and Rose Coco; sisters: Sarah Beister, Louise Sparano, and Santha Oddo; and brothers, Sebastian Coco and Sam Coco.

Lena was born and grew up in Omaha’s “Little Italy.” She attended Train School and Omaha Tech High School.  She worked many jobs including Fairmont Ice-Cream, Frontier Laundry, and The Colony Club.

She met husband Jim at a dance in 1938, and they married in 1941.  After Jim’s World War II military service, they settled in Omaha, where both worked restaurant and bakery positions for several years.  Little did Lena know she would one day work side by side with Jim and own two successful businesses.  They purchased Eve’s bakery in Council Bluffs, Iowa in the mid-fifties and later opened Rockbrook Bakery in what was

then “far west” Omaha in 1963. It was here that Lena shined. She greeted everyone with a smile, she learned to know everyone in the community by name, and looked forward to their daily chats and visits.  She also managed the books and bakery staff.

During this time, she and Jim also raised their four children—Jim, Pat, Mary, and John. It was from her family that Lena derived her greatest sense of pride.  She loved having everyone over to cook for them, especially her famous sauce; her kitchen was the noisy and tasty hub to all.  She had great pride in the accomplishments of her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and valued being with them more than anything else.

Lena lived in her home until age 93 before spending over two years at Westgate Assisted Living, and finally the last several months at Louisville Care Center.  She made friends easily among the residents and staff.

She is survived by her children: Jim Mazzei (Mary Anne), Pat Mazzei, Mary Berner (Mark), and John Mazzei (Debbie); her brothers, Tom Coco and Joe Coco; brother-in-law, Pat Mazzei (Eleanor); grandchildren: Angie Kennedy (John), Teresa Fey (Adam), Matthew Mazzei (Oona), Nathan Mazzei, Kyle Mazzei, Lauren Berner, Haley Berner, Connor Mazzei, and Natalie Mazzei; six great-grandchildren; many cousins, nieces, and nephews.

 

2 Comments

  • Rick and Carrie Baier Posted February 28, 2017 4:11 pm

    Lena was such a great lady! Loved by many and “grandma” to most. She leaves behind great memories and will be greatly missed. May she Rest In Peace.

  • Carl and Diane Adkins Posted March 3, 2017 8:28 pm

    Jim and Mary Anne, please accept sincerest condolences from Diane and me on the loss of Jim’s mother. Next time I call (or hear from) Wayne Moore, I’ll let him know about it.

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