Gloria Noemi Morelli
January 6, 1937 – June 16, 2021
Gloria Noemi Morelli was born into this world on January 6th, 1937 in Santiago Nonualco, El Salvador, and passed into the afterlife on June 16th, 2021 at her home in Longmont, Colorado, with her sons Marco and Anthony by her side. She lived most of the last 50 years in New Hyde Park, New York, with her husband of 46 years, Vinicio Morelli (d. 2019), where they raised a loving family that was devoted to her till the end.
Family was the most important thing to Gloria, and while she adored her two sons and gave them her all, she was also a mother-figure to a motley assortment of nieces and nephews, friends’ and neighbors’ kids, who created their fair share of excitement and trouble. She cooked and cleaned for us; shuttled us around to wherever we needed to go (soccer practices, doctors’ appointments, even skateboarding); urged us to study, work diligently, take care of ourselves; and kept tabs on the bunch as best she could. The house at 80 Maple Drive was a vibrant scene of family gatherings, birthday parties, holiday celebrations, everyday joy and occasional soap operas—a fragrant, jocular, and hospitable home, where, at one time or another, languages and cuisines from all over the world mingled at the same table.
Her beans were legendary, and though she also worked for many years, assisting her brother Rigoberto (d. 2020) and sister-in-law Lucy at the front desk of the Cornejo Dental Offices—where patients got to know her sweet, jubilant, heart-centered personality—Gloria was primarily a homemaker, and it was in her divine nature to make people feel at home. This became especially real in 1980 when the Morellis opened up their home, providing asylum to the Cornejo kids, Rigo and Luis, and their parents, who were fleeing the civil war in El Salvador.
In her own way, Gloria was an adventurer. As a single woman in 1969, she left her country and moved to the world’s capital of the time—the Big Apple, Nueva York—where she sought and found not only some degree of freedom, but most importantly, ties of love and friendship that would last a lifetime. She delighted in retelling the story of how her eyes encountered Vinicio’s across the dimly lit room of the dance hall that fateful night when she met her “adorado tormento” (adored torment, or beloved storm): it was getting late, but she saw her future in his glances. It is good that he finally asked her to dance, before the last number! She was a true romantic. She enjoyed music and food, travel and society; she revolved around the people in her life. In her day, she sewed and mended, and kept a backyard garden with the most beautiful tomatoes, veggies, and flowers.
A devout Catholic, Gloria loved Jesus and attended mass regularly most of her adult life at Norte Dame Parish in New Hyde Park, NY, and more recently (in the weeks before COVID-19 arrived) had begun attending St. John the Baptist Church in Longmont, CO. Her home community in El Salvador, where she and Vinicio were united in holy matrimony, was the Iglesia Sagrada Familia in Colonia Centroamérica of San Salvador. Her favorite saint was San Antonio de Padua, and there was often a devotional candle burning on the stovetop.
Gloria was preceded in death by her father Antonio Cornejo and mother Carmen Avalos de Cornejo; husband Vinicio Morelli; and brother Rigoberto Cornejo. She is survived by her brothers Romeo (& Milagro, d. 2020), Tony (& Esther), Nelson (& Lily), and Ricardo (& Rosie) Cornejo; sister Lilian Cornejo de Lucha (& Heriberto); sons Marco (& Kayla) and Anthony Morelli; and granddaughters Carmen and Beatrice. The full list of nephews, nieces, and cousins who were part of Gloria’s life would be very long. Special mention must go, however, to Victor Hugo Lucha, who also found personal asylum in the Morelli home for a time.
Via Vinicio’s side, Gloria’s life was closely entwined with Renata and Romano (d. 2012) Morelli, and their daughters’ families including Elizabeth (& James) Sallusto and Grace (& Pat) Adamo. Ann Marie and Giorgio (d. 2019) Sousa were also part of the weave, while Licia & Ervino Cusmiani (d. 1989, 1987) helped the fledgling Morellis purchase 80 Maple Drive, living upstairs for a couple years with then-teens Sergio and Rita, before moving back to Australia. Vinicio’s parents, Antonio and Maria Morelli, and sister Laura, were part of Gloria’s international fabric and welcomed her into their familia with open arms (and incredible food) when she traveled to Italy.
All the friends and neighbors who Gloria loved and played significant roles in her life are too numerous to mention, but we would be remiss to leave out the following individuals and their families: Ruby & Tony Styratos; Maria & Mike Demarinis; Gladys & Terry Sawa; Cynthia & Ricardo (d. 2010) Drilon, whose son Mark was like another brother at the house; Violeta & Richard Butler, whose son John was another regular; Lucrecia & Roberto Sandoval (whose son Stuardo stayed in an extra room while completing his medical residency); Vicente Mendoza; Lucia Mazola; Irene Chen (who also stayed at the house during a time of personal transition); Lidia Flores; as well as next-door neighbors Olga and Harold Coppola, Josephine and Sal Licata, and Nick and Karen Obidienzo, whose kids were all part of the mix on the block. Canine companions Goliath, Kojack, and last but not least, Mojo (aka Mojito), were loyal furry friends through different stages of her life.
Gloria’s family extends their heartfelt gratitude to Howe Mortuary & Crematory and St. John the Baptist Catholic Church in Longmont, Colorado, for their faithful care of Gloria’s body and soul. During the last year-plus, throughout the COVID-19 crisis and mounting health challenges, Kayla Morelli and Patricia Brill played important caretaking roles, contributing their love-in-action to the unique story of Gloria Noemi’s life. Her loving spirit lives in us.
* The author of this remembrance, Marco V Morelli, assumes responsibility for unintentional errors and omissions in the above account. Corrections may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday, July 2, 2021
Friday, July 2, 2021
Gloria Noemi Morelli
Olga & Harold Prada
June 28, 2021
We are so deeply sad for Gloria's departure. Our sincere sympathies goes out to all her family and friends. We love both Gloria and her husband Mr. Morelli. They were not only the best neighbors we ever had but furthermore they were a second set of grandparents to both of our children. Their pure friendship and love will be with us forever. May they both rest in peace. 🙏
Victor Lucha Ciali
June 25, 2021
My Aunt Gloria ! Was one of kind Human with so many Blessings a gifted, as her first Nephew, she was happy to get the title Aunt Gloria she received me with open arms and open kitchen there was something, that she put together for you! I thankful as a Aunt as Mother to me, direction number of the bus, sub exit Amazing
She will miss for many many including Me.
We were Bless to have in our life's, and without the open heart and feelings from the Morelli”s
Family. I will miss you the rest of our life! Victor Hugo, and Paul my partner adore her kindness , generosity and the door Always Open Recibe our Love from Your First Nephew Victor and Paul .
June 24, 2021
We are so very sorry to hear this sad news. We have so so many wonderful memories. We are grateful we got to see her before she left for Colorado. Aunt Gloria will be forever in our hearts ♥️ 🙏🏼
Catherine, Janine Bernardo and family
Daria C. Guerra Leverne
June 24, 2021
I am so sorry for your loss and my deepest condolences.
I'm glad I got the chance to meet your mom at the Longmont Senior Center before she passed.
Your memorial made her sound like she was an incredible woman!
May she rest in peace. ~Daria