Lillian (Lil) Ghilardi, 87, of Peckville, passed away Thursday, May 31, 2018 while holding the hands of her beloved children. She was the wife of the late Frank P. Ghilardi who passed away in 2012, with whom she shared 64 years of marriage.
Born in Throop on June 21, 1930, Lil was the daughter of the late Alfonso and Freda Mathias Warney; and suffered the tragic loss of her Father, who was killed on Election Day, when she was only 4 years old. She was then raised in Dickson City by her widowed mother and her two older brothers, Teddy and Paul. She was a proud graduate of Dickson City High School and never missed a reunion.
First and Foremost, Lil was a loving, tireless and fiercely loyal mother, grandmother and great grandmother to her children, Frank and Lora, and their families—shaped by her unending devotion to her Catholic Faith and Italian heritage. She lived a full and passionate life with a level of boundless energy that was amazing. She always worked hard to make a better life for the family—as a waitress in the Poconos; at a dress factory in Jessup, as a very successful "party plan" saleswoman and in her home.
Lil also always cooked and baked—for everybody. In fact, one of her great pleasures was a good party where she could watch others enjoy her food! In 1976, she became the co-founder (with her son Frank), owner/operator and inspirational chef of the "Alora Dining Room" (in Olyphant and later in Clarks Summit and Peckville)—creating memorable dishes like her Coquille Alora and "Chicken Lillian". She also worked closely with her grandchildren, Francis and Michaelyn, at their "new generation" AV Restaurant in Moosic (2003-2015)—providing invaluable talent and support—making homemade pastas, rum cake, cheesecake, puff pastries and "Grandma's Sunday Sauce & Meatballs". Not surprisingly, Lil's professional culinary skills and tireless work ethic are still legendary throughout Northeastern PA. Moreover, and as time allowed, Lil was also the joyful "right hand man" and constant advisor at her daughter Lora's gift store, "Live With It" in Peckville (1990-2014)—making bows, wrapping gifts, tending the cash register and entertaining the customers.
It is especially nice to report that even as Lil's body aged and weakened, her active, questioning and creative mind stayed alert to the end. She was a constant reader, stayed up-to-date on current and cultural events, always voted and always had an opinion to share and discuss. It is hard to imagine a life without Lil.
In addition to her parents, Lil was preceded in death by her husband Frank P. Ghilardi; daughter-in-law Christine Ghilardi; grandsons Michael Peterson and Aaron Hobbs; and brothers Theodore Warney, Paul Warney and infant brother Sam Warney.
Surviving are son Frank X. Ghilardi, Peckville; daughter Lora Hobbs and her husband David, Peckville; grandchildren, Christina Oxley, Ithaca, NY; Francis Ghilardi, Rehoboth Beach, DE; Michaelyn Ghilardi, Jessup; Alicia Musial and her husband Robert, Archbald; and Letizia Cwikla and her husband Brian, Archbald; great-grandchildren, Noah, Lillian, Samuel and Eleanor Oxley; Madeline Musial and Oscar Cwikla; as well as numerous nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Tuesday, June 5, 2018 at 1pm in Sacred Heart of Jesus Church, 1101 Willow Street, Peckville. Those attending are asked to go directly to the church on Tuesday afternoon. Interment will follow in St. Mary’s Assumption Cemetery, Rt. 247, Montdale.
The family will receive friends and relatives in the church Monday, June 4, 2018 from 5pm-8pm. Arrangements are entrusted to Adonizio Funeral Home, LLC, 251 William Street, Pittston.