Arrangements under the direction of Claude R. Boyd - Caratozzolo Funeral Home, Deer Park, NY.
A Tribute to Patricia Antonacci
Patricia Jean Brokate was born on October 9, 1941 in the Bronx. She grew up in Valhalla but later made her home on Long Island. This was the beginning of such a loving and remarkable woman's life journey.
In 1962 she married the love of her life, Edward. They started a family and shared 32 wonderful years together. They gave their children Eddie, Andrea and Tina the most precious gift ever – their lives. They lived simply, enjoying times with family and friends. Neighborhood children would observe Pat's genuine concern on those rainy days where she would yell… "Eddie, come in ….Thunder!" She loved when Andrea Kim would help clean and organize the garage for just a quarter and snicker bar. Ed and Andrea paved the way for their little sister, Tina. Pat & Ed enjoyed witnessing their children mature and develop into young adults. Pat and Ed enriched their children's lives by filling it with so much love and understanding which would help them see through anything. They learned respect, patience and caring which certainly grew in value over time.
After the sudden death of Edward, Pat had to muster up the strength to continue forward and be strong for her children. Mariah Catty was her dear cat, who loved being spoiled and gave her comfort in return. Pat continued to be the most caring, selfless woman who put others before herself. She always listened and took mental notes then found pleasure in shopping for others. She cracked up in the Hallmark stores picking out cards for others and giggled as she bought funny t-shirts. You could here her tender voice saying "Hey Faggot" and see her gentle hand flipping you the bird. Mom and Tina got a kick out of scaring the crap out of each other like the time when Tina went to go to the bathroom and as she lifted the lid, a red gargoyle popped out of the toilet! Mom cried as she laughed so hard. She continued to bring a smile to others. She felt joy helping her parents when they were in need of extra care. Spending time and caring for her grandchildren, Anthony, Ariana, Madison and Natalia, were the days she cherished the most. Her "29" year old Irish, blue eyes were always smiling, as she loved to hear the words Gramma and Memaw lingering in the air of her home.
Pat was compassionate, always a good listener and tried to understand the way other people felt. She had a natural gift of making others laugh and her family and friend's always could count on Pat to bring a smile to their face. Her sense of humor was second to none and they just never knew what she was going to do or say; but knew her fun loving spirit would brighten their day. Keeping friendships was important to her and she was a loyal friend, no matter where she was - she continued to correspond with friends through letters, phone calls, e-mails, Instant Messages and Facebook too. Enjoying dinners, painting, shopping, shows, taking care of her plants, trips to Atlantic City were a few ways she enjoyed passing the time after she retired from Citibank.
We were devastated when we learned about her Lung Cancer diagnosis this past February, yet together we were determined to move forward and conquer this monstrous disease which causes more deaths each year than breast, prostate and colon cancer combined. It was now time for her children to step up and shower Patricia with the care, love, and patience that was previously bestowed to them. Although Lung Cancer ravages and destroys the human body, it never shattered Patricia's hope for recovery or her spirit. We were lucky to have so many God sends … Andrea and Tina's strong will and resolve to find out the course of action that would be in their mom's best interest yet respect her wishes; while Eddie offered the warmest companionship throughout the whole process. We especially thank our families for their understanding and support as we endured. We worked together with our mom every step of the way, trying to stay positive each day – that's what their mom would do. Eddie would crack a smile when he would hear "Ed just get out of my room and leave me alone." but in the next breath, she would be delighted to see her son in laws Michael or Jason visiting on a lunch break or after work. Tina would plead for mom to have some soup and the response she would receive was "No, not Nowww!."….. but then Uncle Bobby would say "Patreeeccccia, I want you to have some soup….. and she would say "Sure!"
We could not have been so strong without the solid foundation our parents gave us and the constant love and support that was wrapped around us from family and friends from the start. Prayers, phone calls, shawls, flowers, post-it notes, kisses, necklaces, e-mails, hugs, voice mails, jell-o, talks on long drives, soup, smiles, cards, meals, pins, just becauses, to name just a few. Mom continued to fight to the bitter end and wanted to finish her last 3 radiation treatments even when her body was weak and saying no more. It wasn't until exactly a week before her passing when she said at 2 AM …"I give up!" and Andrea replied "You're not giving up mom…. You're just ready to see dad. We all know he has waited long enough to see you and he is in need for some more God forsaken white socks."
Patricia's memory will live on in every life she has touched, and there were so many. Just as her father, Robert, received a purple heart for his battle wound and bravery, we would like to recognize Patricia for the courageous fight she endured during her 8 month, valiant battle with lung cancer. She left us in good ole Patricia style, sense of humor and all. Her beautiful soft hands, clasped together except for her signature finger so often used letting us all know "I'm living the good life now – Don't you worry…. I'm here in the most beautiful place with my true love, Ed. We all know that they are having some interesting conversations as they drink a couple of Martini's together in paradise.
September 26, 2009 will be the final date listed between Patricia's dash in her life's journey. We know in her humble way she is proud of the way she lived her life and spent her dash. Patricia leaves her children and grandchildren with the special gift of life, as well as the fond memories we hold so tightly and close to our heart. She reminds us to keep smiling, celebrate today, tomorrow and everyday. Enjoy each breath of fresh air and don't take things for granted…you never know when it will be your last. Patricia, our loving mother, is our priceless treasure and if we spent our whole life through, we would never find a Mom who could ever compare to you. We love you.