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Memories & Candles

“Recollections of my early days at Connecticut General (later CIGNA) are filled with memories of Ada's smiling and unending support of all the new BA...Read More »
1 of 6 | Posted by: Jay Baker - Windsor Locks, CT

“Although we are greatly saddened by Ada's passing, we are comforted to know that she is now free of all worldly troubles, and that she has reunited...Read More »
2 of 6 | Posted by: Dave and Patty Cyr - CT

“I have many very fond memories of working with Ada at CIGNA. She was a friend to all who knew her, caring, considerate, and compassionate, with a...Read More »
3 of 6 | Posted by: Carolyn Cartland - Bloomfield, CT

“I have many fond memories of dear Ada, "my Italian mother" from the seventies at Cigna where we worked in the benefits unit that included Linda...Read More »
4 of 6 | Posted by: Marilyn E. Johnston - Bloomfield, CT

“Oh Ada you are already missed by all of us at Brookdale Place.What a kind and gentle soul you are. Dan please keep in touch you ment alot to us too. ”
5 of 6 | Posted by: Marybeth Gendron - East hartford, CT

“My honorary Aunt Ada, I will miss you terribly. Your love and spirit guided me through many dark days. Thank you for being you. Blessings on Dan, my...Read More »
6 of 6 | Posted by: Jeanne Spinosa - jamestown, RI


Ada F. Stark of Brookdale Place in West Hartford, widow of her eternally beloved husband, Mirco Stark, died on Tuesday, 16 August 2011 at the age of 84 following an arduous, 13-year battle versus Parkinson's disease. Born in Sorbara, Italy (a rural hamlet of Modena), on 3 August 1927, youngest of the 8 children of the late Celso and Marcellina (Vignoli) Ferrarini, Ada passed a classic pastoral childhood—short on material goods, long on familial love and bonding. Through an almost-inconceivable set of circumstances and highly-improbable chance occurrences, Ada met Mirco and his small, nuclear family, who were Yugoslavian refugees of World War II, while working in a pastry shop in Modena in the late 1940s. Married in the basilica at St. Peter's in Rome on May 1st, 1951, Ada and Mirco had hoped to make a life in Italy. Unfortunately, the country, still suffering the economic ravages of the post-WWII era, offered little in the way of employment opportunities. That prompted Ada and Mirco, along with Ada's mother-in-law, Elizabeth, to immigrate to the United States by boat, arriving in NY harbor on Columbus Day of 1951. Exhibiting all the traits endemic to immigrants, they worked hard, pooled their resources and carved out a living in their new homeland. After holding a number of short-term, factory and assembly-line jobs, first in Meriden, CT, and later in Hartford, Ada became what would now be referred to as a "stay-at-home mother" when she gave birth to their only child, a son named Daniel. In 1962, Ada and family moved to East Hartford, where they lived for the next 15 years. In the mid-to-late 1960s, Ada re-entered the work force, becoming a sales associate for G. Fox & Co., a position that provided a stage for her truly extraordinary people skills to flourish (as attested to by shelves of sales awards and commendations that she received in her dozen or so years there). Shortly after moving to West Hartford (and with no small degree of trepidation), Ada left the comfortable environment of G. Fox and became employed at Connecticut General Life Insurance Company [later CIGNA] in 1978. She thrived there as well, until her retirement in 1992. Ada traveled extensively with Mirco, both before and after her retirement—in the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean and throughout Europe, frequently visiting her Italian relatives. Unfortunately, when Mirco died in October of 2001, life for Ada was indelibly marred. Her Parkinsonian symptoms, which had initially become evident in the late 1990s as a minor tremor in her left leg, were exacerbated by a deep and lingering depression following Mirco's death that never fully lifted. By December of 2003, her deteriorating mobility and coordination became safety issues, compelling her to take up permanent residence at Brookdale Place (formerly Sunrise Assisted Living Facility). Predeceased by Mirco, Elizabeth and her parents, Ada also endured the passing of: 6 of her 7 siblings (brothers Guiseppe, Ivo, Nello, and Wilmo Ferrarini; sisters Maria Martinelli and Teresa Leoni); brother-in-laws Tino Leoni, Franco Rovatti and Nino Martinelli; Urbano Ballestri; Albert Kleinman; Sergio DeCarli; Beatrice Abrams; Ethel Stokarski; and virtually all of the friends from her childhood. In addition to her son, Daniel, of West Hartford, Ada is survived by: One sister (Giovanna [Ferrarini] Rovatti); 2 nieces (Carla [Leoni] Ballestri and Mirella Ferrarini); 4 nephews (Massimo Rovatti, Andrea Ferrarini, Paolo Ferrarini and Luciano Leoni), all resident in Italy; her closest friend, Frances Kleinman; Frances' children, Jeanne and Gary, and their families; Mariuccia and Jack Sirotti (Daniel's Godparents); Oneglia DeCarli; Dan and Joni Fine; Julio and Annette Cremisi; Tom and Sheila Tripputi; Diane Kobylarz; Eleanor Cohen; and innumerable neighbors, colleagues and others who, upon meeting her at any point 'along the way', became her eternal friends and will deeply mourn her loss. Acknowledgments of immeasurable gratitude are due: For the deft, delicate ministrations of the good people from Masonicare, who gently guided Ada through the final grueling weeks of her odyssey; and most of all, to the compassionate and skilled professionals at Brookdale Place. Over the final 7-and-a-half years of her life, the genuine love, affection, respect and dignity with which these people cared for her turned Brookdale from a 'place' into a home, in the truest sense of the term. Our debt to them is beyond recompense. As a devout Roman Catholic, Ada's faith assures her that she will not only live in the Lord forever, but will be reunited with Mirco and all her beloved family and friends who await her in the After Life. We pray to God she's right. Friends are invited to join Daniel for the celebration of a Memorial Mass in St. Thomas the Apostle Church 872 Farmington Ave. West Hartford on Saturday August 20th at 10:00 a.m. Donations in her memory may be made to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, Church Street Station, P.O. Box 780, New York, NY 10008-0780.

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