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Lucy (Tumea) Cosenza

Updated: Mar 10, 2022


Lucy Tumea-Cosenza, passed away surrounded by her loved ones on March 7, 2022. Visitation will be held Friday, March 11, 2022 at Sunset Memorial Gardens (7601 Fleur Dr, Des Moines, IA 50321) from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. with Rosary at 6 p.m. A Catholic mass will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, March 12, 2022 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church, with a graveside service to follow at Sunset Memorial Gardens. Following the burial there will be a light luncheon held at Sunset Memorial Gardens for friends and family to gather and celebrate Lucy’s vibrant life.


Lucy was born on January 14,1936 to Salvatore and Rosina Tumea and grew up in a Vilapriolo, Province of Enna (Sicily, Italy). She traveled to the United States in 1961, and married her husband John F. Cosenza in 1964 and had four children.


Lucy spent most of her career working at JC Penney’s and Von Maur as a seamstress for over 30 years. She was an artist in her trade and was considered one of the best seamstresses. She was a creator in everything she did specifically in gardening and cooking. She would cook the best foods with so much flavor and baked the most amazing bread.


One of her favorite things to do was to travel back to Italy and visit her hometown of Vilapriolo. There she loved to visit her aunts, uncles and cousins. While living on the south side of Des Moines; commonly referred to as little Italy; Lucy was in the first original Italian Women singing and dancing group. She took pride in her Italian culture, and instilled in the rest of her family the values, experiences, and love for her Italian culture.


Lucy also loved music, singing and dancing. One of her favorite things to do was to spend time with her ten grandchildren and create a band. She would use flutes, tambourines, spoons and pans for drums. As she would sing and whistle she would take her grandkids marching around the neighborhood so that everyone could appreciate her music. She was so proud of her band and her family.


She is survived by her husband of 57 years John F. Cosenza; daughter Maria (Steve) Signor, son Antonino Cosenza of Des Moines, daughter's Lucy (James) Feeley of Surprise, AZ, and Jennie (Terry) Dooley of West Des Moines. Ten Grandchildren, Marissa and Nick Signor, Cameron and Mara Cosenza, Lucinda, RoseMarie, James Joseph, and Faustina Feeley, and Nicolle and Jared Dooley. Sisters Maria Bevilacqua of Las Vegas, NV and Nancy Danca of Des Moines and brothers Joseph Tumea Sr. (Sheryl) of Des Moines, and Anthony (Joyce) Tumea of Downers Grove, IL. She is also survived by many nieces and nephews. Her family was her village and she loved them all.


Lucy was preceded in death by her parents Salvatore and Rosina Tumea.



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