Maria D’Orazio, 96

Maria D’Orazio, 96, of Dagsboro, Del., passed away Friday, May 8, 2009, in Atlantic Shores Nursing Home, Millsboro, Del. Born in Cansano, in the Abruzzi region of Italy, she married in 1931 and immigrated to the United States in 1936. She had worked at Eden Park Nursing Home in Cobleskill, N.Y. before moving to Dagsboro in 1973.

For the next 29 years she worked at Stockley Center, Georgetown, Del., as a foster grandparent for the severely handicapped. She received numerous awards for her work and dedication to the clients she served. She finally retired from the program at the age of 91. She returned to Italy several times to visit her homeland and relatives. Her final trip abroad was to Jerusalem to visit the Holy Land. A devout Catholic, she was devoted to her religion and to her family.

D’Orazio was preceded in death by her beloved husband, John D’Orazio; two sisters in Australia; and a brother in Italy. She is survived by her two sons, Nino D’Orazio, of Dagsboro, and John D’Orazio, of Schenectady, N.Y.; four grandchildren, Lynn Blatzheim of Laytonsville, Md., Deborah Summerlin of Haymarket, Va., Richard D’Orazio of Ocean View, Del., and Joseph D’Orazio of Lakewood Ranch, Fla.; and nine great-grandchildren.

A Mass of Christian Burial was scheduled for Tuesday, May 12, 2009. A graveside service was scheduled for Thursday, May 14, 2009, in Summit, N.Y.