Emily Trostheide (née D’Annunzio) was born in Detroit, Michigan on November 16, 1927. She passed away on October 8, 2021, just shy of her 94th birthday ending over a decade long battle with Alzheimer’s Dementia.
Emily was the youngest child of Anthony and Maria V. D’Annunzio, who both preceded her in death along with her sisters Bernadine “Bunday” DiVito and Ann “Nanni” D’Annunzio and brother August “Augie” D’Annunzio.
Emily graduated from St. Stanislaus High School in Detroit in 1945. She was working as a secretary at Consumers Power Gas company when she met her husband, Tom Trostheide. At an employee Valentine’s Dance on February 13, 1953, she told her brother Aug of Tom, “He’s single, he’s Catholic, and I’m taking him home to Ma.” Tom and Emily wed at St. Veronica’s Church on April 24, 1954. They were married just shy of 54 years when Tom preceded her in death on February 3, 2008.
Their only child, Cathy, was born in 1964. Because she had severe asthma as a child, Tom and Emily moved their family from Michigan to Scottsdale, Arizona in January of 1969. Emily was a fixture at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School and Parish in the 1970’s and 80’s where she helped at the parish office in a variety of roles and volunteered and served as coordinator of both playground duty and hot dog days as well as serving as “the candy lady” for the school fundraising drives. She also spent 10 years driving one of the school bus routes. “Mrs. T” had some strict rules on her bus, but all the kids loved her. For years after she retired when she would run into any of them in town there was always a lot of love and smiles.
Tom and Emily moved to Sacramento, California in 1989 to be closer to their daughter who had moved there for work two years prior. While there, they formed a small “band” called Three Belles and a Beau along with some of their neighbors from the senior apartment complex where they lived. The group would perform at various assisted living and nursing homes with familiar tunes for which Tom had re-written amusing lyrics. Emily was sad to leave all her new friends when she and Tom and Cathy all moved back to Arizona in 1994.
As a friend recently described her, Emily was always the life of the party – even when there was no party! If you didn’t laugh when Emily was around, then you just didn’t know how to have fun. Even in her last years as she was struck with Alzheimer’s Dementia, she was still laughing and smiling. In her last days she accurately described herself as “happy go lucky.”
Cathy’s husband, Jim is a true saint who Tom and Emily always called their son because they said calling him “son in law” made it sound like they were required to love him when they already loved him anyway. In December of 2012, Jim took an early retirement so he could stay home and take care of Emily fulltime as she began her challenges with dementia. As the evil disease progressed and Emily needed a higher level of care, Cathy was fortunate enough to be able to get her into Sunshine Village Memory Care Center in December of 2016. This became her final home where she was not only well cared for by the amazing staff, but where she was truly loved. There are not enough words to describe how grateful we are to everyone there – Emily would have left us long before had it not been for their wonderful care.
Emily is survived by her only child, Cathy and her husband, Jim McIntyre, her sister-in-law (and namesake for her daughter) Catherine D’Annunzio, her lifelong best friend and Godmother to her daughter, Ellen Schofield, and many nieces, nephews, cousins, Godchildren, and countless friends.
Friends and family are invited to attend the services as follows: The recitation of the Rosary for the repose of her soul will begin at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, October 27, 2021. The Funeral Mass will follow at 11:00 a.m.. Both will occur at St. Joan of Arc Roman Catholic Church at 3801 E. Greenway Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85032. Interment will be at St. Francis Catholic Cemetery 2033 N. 48th Street, Phoenix, AZ following the Mass. In lieu of flowers, donations may made in Emily’s honor to St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church 3801 E. Greenway Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85032-4698 [www.stjoanofarc.com] or to the Solanus Casey Center 1780 Mount Elliott Street, Detroit, MI 48207 [www.solanuscenter.org]. The family also greatly appreciates the offering of Masses and prayers for the repose of Emily’s soul.
Family and friends are also invited to come and celebrate Emily’s life at a gathering at The Sicilian Butcher at 15530 N. Tatum Blvd #160 in Phoenix beginning at 5 p.m. on October 27, 2021.
To view a video memorial of Emily visit: https://youtu.be/bejnrHwCZ5o