Remembering the Gentile’s Christmas 

Remembering the Gentile’s Christmas 



Now that spring is days away, St. Patrick’s Day is around the corner and Easter not far behind, let’s take a minute to think back to Christmas 2017, to warm our hearts and feel the joy that filled the home of Mary Ann “Mimi” and Bob “Popi” Gentile of Westerly, who host their entire family for all major holidays, particularly Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Seventy-nine-year-old Mimi still bakes and cooks and keeps the family traditions alive. On Christmas morning, the entire clan gathers for a breakfast of Cocoa Puffs, blueberry muffins, and sausage sandwiches, exchanges presents, goes home for a few hours, and returns to Mimi and Popi’s for a dinner of prime rib. When her first daughter was born 61 years ago, Mimi also started a Gentile family tradition of making red flannel stockings for family members. Now, all of her children — along with her grandchildren, grand-dogs and sons-in-law — have red flannel stockings with their names stitched on. Mary Ann’s daughter, Diana Gentile Pringer, said her mom continues to make Christmas special by keeping family traditions alive. Diana also said it always amazes her that so many Westerly matriarchs “including Mrs. Marie Nigrelli, Mrs. Deary, Mrs. Broccolo, and Mrs. Kmetz,” still prepare the holiday meals for their large families. With Easter so near, perhaps this beautiful memory will encourage other local families to consider submitting photos of family frittata feasts! 


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