life Adela “Della” Zinzella predicted that she would live to be 92. On the night of Wednesday, July 18, 2018, she did just that, passing away one week before her 93rd birthday.
Della Marie was born on July 26, 1925, the daughter of Italian immigrants Angelo and Daily (Coretti) Ferrara in Rossiter, PA. Growing up in a large Catholic family of seven siblings during the Depression, she never forgot her humble beginnings and took every opportunity to remind anyone who would listen to be proud of their family heritage and appreciate the value of a dollar. “Take care of your money and it will take care of you” is just one of the many pieces of advice she passed on to her family.
Della chose to live the majority of her life in the town she was born. She married Harry Zinzella in 1945 and had two sons Harry Michael and Paul Angelo, all three of whom preceded her in death. She was the definition of a mama bear, protecting and supporting her boys, as she encouraged Harry Michael to pursue art, poetry, and acting and assisted Paul with his numerous business endeavors.
Della was truly a woman ahead of her time and served as a role model to many working women in her community. What she lacked in formal education, she made up for with grit and lots of hard work. She founded Green Acres Personal Care home in the 1970’s where she continued to work well past her 80th birthday. In the 1980’s, she and her son Paul built and established Green Acres Auction Barn which later was transformed into the Buffalo Lodge restaurant and bar.
To say Della was larger than life is an understatement. If people didn’t know her, they knew of her. She had many hobbies and talents which included cooking amazing Italian food, gardening, painting, playing the piano (by ear), collecting “antiques,” canning, and saving as many stray cats as she possibly could. Her family and those close to her will never forget her homemade ravioli, but she will be remembered most for her many life lessons. You could always count on Della to give you advice whether you wanted it or not.
When parting ways with her family, she used to always say, “I love you more,” and she truly did. Her love for her family was pure, unconditional, and endless. They were her greatest treasure, and no words can describe the impact she and her love had on them.
Della is survived by her sister Sylvia Ferrara of Rossiter PA; daughter in law Regina Zinzella of Rossiter PA; six grandchildren Dr. Heather Zinzella Cox and husband Chris of Wilmington, DE, Zeb Zinzella and wife Becca of Canonsburg, PA, Somer Baun and husband Shane of Punxsutawney PA, Paige Zinzella and Carl Catalano of Punxsutawney PA, and Zane Zinzella and wife Olivia of Rossiter PAand Zach Zinzella of Rossiter; 7 great-grandchildren, Evan Cox, Conrad Cox, Simon Cox, Adele Zinzella, Francesca Zinzella, August Catalano, and Zeppelin Zinzella.Genevieve Haverilla, Gloria Zemlin and Josephine Pisano; two brothers, Herman and Richard Ferrara; infant sister Theresa Ferrara; and countless cats named Simon.
At her request, there will be no viewing. A private funeral will be held with the family.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in Della’s memory to Orphan’s of the Storm in Kittanning, PA to celebrate her love of cats. Donations can be made online at https://www.orphansofthestorm-pa.org/ or mailed to: Orphans of the Storm PA 85 Kittanning, PA 16201.