Louise DiPietro Barth (DiBartolomeo), passed away on November 28, 2017, a little more than a month before her 96th birthday. Her last Sunday was spent driving to Holy Redeemer Church for Mass and then to breakfast with her friends. After returning, she fell in her Collinwood home, broke her hip and died two days later. Hundreds of people attended Louise’s funeral Mass celebrated by Reverend Martin Polito and concelebrated by Reverend Joseph Previte and Reverend Neil O’Connor.
Louise lived almost her entire life in Collinwood. Her parents, Joe and Rose DiPietro, migrated to the United States from Introdaqua, Italy in 1920 and settled in Niagara Falls, New York where Louise was born in 1922. In 1927, they travelled to Cleveland by motorcycle and settled in Collinwood. Her parents were parishioners of Holy Redeemer Church where Louise went to school as did her brother Anthony and sisters Lena (Zangare) and Gloria (Colangelo). She later graduated from Collinwood High School in 1940.
On May 23, 1942, she married Collinwood native, Christy Barth at Holy Redeemer. In 1947, they built their house in Collinwood where their son Michael was born in 1949. After her beloved Christy died in 2010, she maintained her home alone, despite severely arthritic knees. She never felt sorry for herself nor wanted anyone to feel sorry for her. She knew what she wanted and how she wanted to live, no matter what anyone else told her. She lived a full life and wanted to make the most of it. She loved Collinwood and Holy Redeemer and was loyal to both. The last of a dying breed, she often said that the only move she would ever make out of her home was to All Souls Cemetery.
She took great pride in being Italian and worked hard to promote her heritage. She was a member of many Italian Organizations, including the Italian American Foundation and the Avanti America Lodge of the ISDA. She has a place on the WALL OF HONOR at the Villa Serena. In 1987, she was recognized as Woman of the Year by the American Nationalities Movement for her hard work and dedication to the Italian Culture. She was proud to have been able to meet President Nixon dressed in her native Abruzzo garb.
She had 19 Godchildren and they meant so much to her, along with her dozens of friends. She loved people and would talk to anyone and everyone. Louise was a very generous and giving person, always passing out religious candles, sacred heart scapulars or her infamous $2 bills. She was the kind of person that attracted people to her without trying, simply because of her kind heart and inquisitive nature. Louise made everyone feel special. She really listened and got to know anyone who came across her path. She had friends of every age and nationality and continued to make friends well into her nineties.
Louise had many nieces and nephews and took a deep pride in celebrating the holidays with her family. When she died, she was beginning preparations to make 80 meatballs for the annual DiPietro Christmas celebration.
Of all she did, first in her life was her immediate family - her son, Michael, daughter-in-law, Rosanna, (D’Amico) and grandchildren, Anna Rizk (Fady), Christina Scalese (Eric) and Michael. She took so much joy in her great-grandchildren, Luca and Leo Scalese, and, like her grandchildren, whenever she saw them she had a gift for them.
She left a handwritten note to her son that she meant for him to find after her passing. It read, “I had a wonderful life, thanks to the help of God and thanks to my loving family and many friends.” Yes, she did.