Concetta DeAngelis

Concetta DeAngelis (nee Ippolito), of Philadelphia, on February 2, 2021 at the age of 96.

Beloved wife for 73 years of the late Peter DeAngelis, Sr. Devoted mother of Anthony DeAngelis (Frances), Margherita Whitman, Peter DeAngelis, Jr. (Patricia). Adored grandmother of Christina DeAngelis, Maria Fernando (Rohan), Tricia Kelley (Robert), Lisa Kinneman (David), and Laura Whitman (Tracey). Proud great-grandmother of Jackson, Natalie, Leo, Lorelei, Chiara, Adeline, Kai, and Honor.

Connie grew up in South Philadelphia with her parents, Concetta and Giuseppe, and her late siblings, Rose, Edith, and Anthony. She showed a love and aptitude for learning from her earliest years. Determined to receive the best education possible, even as an elementary school student and against her father’s wishes, she insisted on going to St. Paul’s instead of the public school close to home. She walked to school every day and would remain in the school office during lunchtime, performing small tasks for the Sisters, as the other children, went home for lunch nearby. Connie attended three years at South Philadelphia High School before, like many 16-year-olds of the day, she was told to leave school in support of the family. Her family often wondered what path she might have followed had she continued her education, particularly given her natural proficiency for math. (which not all her children or grandchildren would inherit.)

To say Connie found her way in life is an understatement. She started working at her father’s seafood market, Ippolito’s, with her sister Rosie, at the age of thirteen. She brought energy, interpersonal skills, and a strong work ethic to the humblest of tasks. Though much of her career and personal story took place in the family fish store, she held multiple jobs simultaneously, over time. At the age of sixteen, she began work as a seamstress at D’Lonzo’s, a tailor shop where she met her husband to be, Peter. Later, when her children began college, she began a 17 year, part-time career at the Center City Strawbridge store, as an associate saleswoman in the Intimate Apparel department. Connie was known by customers and co-workers for her ever-so- natural balance of style and authenticity. Connie felt as comfortable in a beautiful dress or suit with perfect hair and accessories as she did in her apron at Ippolito’s. As one of her Strawbridge co-workers said, “She was a dignified woman, and was a joy to talk with. That is not easy to pull off. To Connie it was second nature.”

Over the years, the legendary “Aunt Connie” brand of various seafood dishes became a hallmark of Ippolito’s. With the professionalism of a businesswoman, the service of a family member, the pride of a strong Italian woman, and eyes like a hawk, she was known across generations of South Philadelphians who would return to the store, year after year at the holidays. Somewhat of a local celebrity, she could be found cooking soft shell crabs on a local morning talk show, be interviewed by the South Philly Review on the “Feast of the Seven Fishes” or advise customers on the best recipes for their purchases. She was the Godmother of the family, and a steadfast support to her nephew Sam, as he expanded a local, corner store into a seafood empire.  Connie’s love of the family business, the rapport she built with thousands of customers and her satisfaction at working hard and well, did not falter over seventy-five years until her retirement at the age of 88.

On her passing, a loyal customer reflected on her life and impact, “Aunt Connie was a remarkable woman who touched the lives of many people. She will be remembered for so many things. She was her happiest when she spoke about her family. That love seemed to be the foundation of how she lived her life. She was intensely proud of all they accomplished. She was a lover of people and brought joy with her cooking prowess and her incredible ability to make every customer she served feel like they were the most important thing she had to accomplish (even when lines at Ippolito’s were blocks long).”

With all these achievements, Connie’s number one love was being a mother to her three children. She was an unwavering presence in their lives and a force to be reckoned with. She was the backbone and heart of her family, instilling the faith and confidence in her children to achieve their goals – first, by embracing a quality education through college and graduate school, then encouraging each child in their professional careers.  She relished the diversity of her children’s interests and was present at every baseball game, band concert, high school show in which they participated. Nothing they required was too much for her to provide. Her home was open to friends, every milestone was celebrated with enthusiasm, every disappointment and challenge they encountered was guided by loving determination and an attitude of moving forward with perseverance, strength, and courage.  In all things, she modeled kindness, humility, and respect for others.

Connie was an amazing grandmother to her five granddaughters. Whether orchestrating the creation of homemade pizzas on a Friday night, turning over her scarf and glove drawer to costume play, or planning an annual day at Hershey Park, she celebrated their individuality and found joy in their company. She made a family dinner every Thursday night during their school years, gathering everyone together to emphasize that family must stay connected and caring of one another.  She supported them in countless activities, and took exceptional pride in the women they became, both professionally and personally. She was thrilled to live to see eight, beautiful, great-grandchildren. Connie’s life was a living example of unconditional love and devotion to family. 

Connie was a faithful Catholic, praying the rosary daily, offering prayers for her family and their intentions. She had special devotion to St. Rita of Cascia and loved visiting the national Shrine in South Philadelphia. Her faith sustained her throughout many challenges, including the early death of her brother at nineteen, the loss of her sisters, a battle with cancer, and in her final year of life, enduring significant health issues. She anticipated her reunion in heaven with her parents, sisters, brother and dear husband, Peter, who preceded her in death by only five months. Connie had confidence in the love and mercy of God, and entered into His loving embrace, finding the peace she sought after a life well lived, with devotion and generosity to those she loved.

In lieu of flowers, donations to St. Jude Research Children’s Hospital, a charity Connie supported faithfully through the years, would be appreciated. 
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Relatives and friends are invited to attend her Viewing, Saturday, February 6, 2021, 9:15 -10:15 A.M at St. Matthew Church (Upper) 3000 Cottman Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19149, followed by her Funeral Mass, 10:30 A.M. Entombment Sunset Memorial Park.

John F. Fluehr & Sons, Inc.

Funeral Home Serving Families Since 1898

3301 Cottman Avenue
Philadelphia PA 19149


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