Dorothea Zapala, 89, died Wednesday in the comfort of her home surrounded by her loving family. Born in Allentown, PA, she raised her family in Colonia for 53 years, moved to Lanoka Harbor to enjoy waterfront living with her husband until his passing in 2013, then resided with her loving daughter and caregiver, Betty, for the last six years.
Dot, as she was known by family and friends, loved being a homemaker while raising her four daughters, and she worked first as a seamstress, later as a secretary, then finally as a proofreader and payroll manager for a court reporting agency until she was 82 years young and her eyes just got too tired to read. Earlier in life she loved to go to Bingo with her friends, she was an avid bowler for many years, and she was a devoted NY Mets fan all of her life.
Dorothea is predeceased by her parents, Charles and Sara Wheaton (nee Houser), her husband of 62 years, John, her daughter, Elaine Beca, her son-in-law, Alan Perna, and her grandson, Richard Perna.
Surviving are her daughters, Elizabeth Ramsthaler and her husband Clifford of Edison, Lori Wakula and her husband Dennis of Lanoka Harbor, and Mari Ellen Kiefer and her husband Kevin of Holmes Beach, Florida; 9 grandchildren, Melissa, Jaclyn, Eric, Vincent, Jessica, Valerie, Dennis, Zachary, and Brittany; and 11 great-grandchildren, Mason, Ryan, Adriana, Mark, Alyssa, Benjamin, Evelyn, Katelynn, Caleb, Donovan and Dennis.
Funeral services will be private under the direction of Gosselin Funeral Home in Edison, and private internment at Hazel Wood Cemetery, Clark.
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