STOW - Carmella V. (Ciancio) Iona, 93, passed away May 9, 2020.
Born in Ravenna, she was a resident of Stow since 1959 and a faithful member of Holy Family Catholic Church. Carmella was proud of her Italian (Sicilian) heritage. She graduated from Ravenna High school in 1944 and then attended and graduated from Boheckers Business College with an accounting/bookkeeping degree. Carmella worked at Bear's Furniture, Skorman’s, Woolworth and Montgomery Ward. Carmella also enjoyed the time she spent working alongside her son Jim at his business, Century 21 JMI Realty. She then became the consummate housewife, mother and grandmother. She became concerned about the decline of products manufactured in the U.S.A. In the early 1960s, she pledged to buy products solely made in the U.S.A. and remained steadfast to her commitment until her death.
Carmella and her friends took a bus from Ravenna to Akron's East Market Gardens dance hall where she met her future husband Anthony (Tony) Iona. They married on November 25, 1948 which happened to be her birthday and, every few years, it was Thanksgiving Day. This was a big day in the Iona household. They were happily married for 63 years when Anthony passed away in 2012.
She enjoyed travel, sewing, music (especially Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra) and ballroom dancing with the love of her life and best friend Tony. The most important matter to her was being with her family. She loved babysitting her grandchildren, Anthony and Nick, and taking them places. A proud supporter of her children's and grandchildren’s activities which ranged from Room Mother, PTA, band parent, to all around cheerleader. She was happiest attending any event that supported her kids or grandkids including sports, band concerts, plays, dog shows, weightlifting contests, Cleveland Browns Backers (Akron Chapter), North Akron Chamber of Commerce, and Italian American Professional Businessman’s Club.
Always, the party planner and entertainer, she had a passion for cooking, especially Italian meals and her favorites, braciola, lasagna and her trademark Italian cake and desserts. She was an active member of the Stow Sunshiners. Carmella was also working and helping on Republican politics and was a very loyal poll booth worker.
Preceded in death by her husband Anthony, parents Rosario and Angeline, brother Sundae Ciancio, sister-in-law Mildred Ciancio and her brothers-in-law, Joseph Sansonetti and Dan Marchetta, nephews Jim Ciancio, Mark Ciancio and niece Beth Ann Ciancio she is survived by sons; Tom Iona of Doylestown, Russ Iona of Cuyahoga Falls, Jim Iona of Munroe Falls; grandchildren Bryan, Anthony, Nicholas; great-grandson Westin; brother Ben (Diane Bradfield) Ciancio of Rootstown; sisters-in-law Adelia "Lil" Sansonetti of Fairlawn and Helen Marchetta of Bath; special nephew and ringbearer at Carmella's wedding Russ Ciancio (Nicky) of Tallmadge, and a host of relatives in Jamestown, New York and Italy and a host of nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and friends.
Carmella can be remembered as the person who loved and protected her family and friends and always did her best to get it right. Also, she was never shy about telling you how she felt or offering her opinion. She was firm but loving!
The family would like to extend a special thank you to all the staff and caregivers at the Village of St. Edward and Elara Caring Hospice.
Private entombment at Rose Hill was held at the convenience of the family. A celebration of Carmella's life will be held and announced at a later date. (REDMON, STOW, 330-688-6631, SS, 5/17/20)