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Memphis Funeral Home

OBITUARY

Rose Radogna Gaia

October 11, 1931September 6, 2021
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Rose Radogna Gaia, of Memphis, Tennessee, passed away peacefully in her home on September 6th 2021. The daughter of Italian immigrants, Anthony Radogna and Domenica Lobianco, Rose was born on October 11, 1931 in Memphis, the youngest of six children. She was a graduate of St. Agnes Academy, and often expressed gratitude to the school’s Dominican Sisters for influencing her life. In July of 1954, Rose met the love of her life, Charlie Gaia. They were married for 36 years and raised a family of three boys and three girls.

Blessed with unfailing optimism, a ready smile, and a gift for putting others at ease, Rose attended mass at St. Louis Catholic Church, was a member of the parish for six decades, and sent all six of her children to St. Louis School. A lifelong member of Pleasant Acres Garden Club, Rose loved her neighborhood, and particularly her neighbors Rena, Inga and Ida, often referring to them as her “best buds.” Desiring to be of service, Rose later in life went to work in the psychology department at the University of Memphis, and in 1999 was honored with the Outstanding Employee Award. Retiring after 21 years, Rose often called her time at the university the best job she ever had.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her husband; her oldest son Chuck; three sisters, Celeste Lenti, Jennie Radogna, Mary Cianciolo; and two brothers, Michael Radogna and Joe Radogna. She is survived by three daughters and two sons, Renee Stern (Joel) of Wayne, Pennsylvania, Mary Adams (Bob), Emily Smith (Major), Marty Gaia (Angela) all of Memphis, and Gary Gaia (Christy) of Missouri City, Texas; nine grandchildren, Tripp Durham, Meredith Durham, Will Stern, Allison Tibbits, Caroline DeMoss, Robert Adams, Vince Gaia, Charlie Smith, Brenner Smith; and one great grandchild, Cameron Durham.

There will be a visitation from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 14, followed by the rosary at 7 p.m. at Memphis Funeral Home on Poplar Avenue. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, September 15 at St. Louis Catholic Church. Burial will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Agnes Academy, University of Memphis, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.MemphisFuneralPoplar.com for the Gaia family.

  • FAMILY

  • Anthony Radogna and Domenica Lobianco, Parents (deceased)
  • Charlie Gaia, Husband (deceased)
  • Chuck Gaia, Son (deceased)
  • Celeste Lenti, Jennie Radogna, and Mary Cianciolo, Sisters (deceased)
  • Michael Radogna and Joe Radogna, Brothers (deceased)
  • Renee Stern (Joel), Mary Adams (Bob), Emily Smith (Major), Marty Gaia (Angela), and Gary Gaia (Christy), Children
  • Tripp Durham, Meredith Durham, Will Stern, Allison Tibbits, Caroline DeMoss, Robert Adams, Vince Gaia, Charlie Smith, Brenner Smith, Grandchildren
  • Cameron Durham, Great Grandchild
  • DONATIONS

  • St. Agnes Academy
  • University of Memphis
  • Le Bonheur Children's Hospital
  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Services

  • Visitation

    Tuesday, September 14, 2021

  • Rosary Service

    Tuesday, September 14, 2021

  • Funeral Mass

    Wednesday, September 15, 2021

  • Graveside Committal Service

    Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Memories

Rose Radogna Gaia

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Florence Dwyer-Wells

September 14, 2021

I love Mrs. Rose. Matter of fact, the Dwyer and Gaia families grew up in the same neighborhood , church,and schools together. The ☘️ Irish and the Italians totaling “12”kids that she so graciously watched over and provided many hours of love ,laughter,and safety. Three generations she has been there for us.Fondest of memories was walking into the kitchen, packed full of their relatives making” real” pastas, raviolis,and Mr.Charlie stirring the “ gravy”( not sauce),telling us to get busy helping if we expected to eat any of them!Thank you for sharing your precious mother with all of us.🌹🙏

Ellen Owens

September 9, 2021

My mother , Jo Stovall was a lifetime good friend of Rose’s starting @ St. Agnes and through the births of her children and mine. She & Charlie & my mom & dad “ran in the same circles “ @ St. Louis. She was my godmother in 1954 & I attended St. Louis with her kids. We were always @ each other’s houses & Christmas @ the Gaia’s was something else! Rose was a really good cook @ I loved the Italian cookies & the STRONG drinks! Rose came to the hospital when I had Sarah & Rachel. When we moved to Cincinnati in 1988, I kept in touch with her & she & my parents came to Cincinnati for a Reds game once. Rose loved baseball and of course bragging about her kids & grandkids. A year ago Willie & U took her out to lunch & she was so gracious!
I’m gonna miss my dear godmother but I will be @ her funeral to say goodbye next week. If any of the kids want to call me, my number is 513-257-9091.
Ellen Stovall Owens

Dora Compton

September 8, 2021

Rose was a a wonderful person with whom I worked with at the University of Memphis. She had a contagious smile and a wonderful personality. She will be sadly missed by all that knew her. Praying for strength for the family. Rose loved her children dearly.

Maggie Glaser

September 8, 2021

Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with your family at this time. We pray Rose is at peace in the loving arms of Jesus.

With love,
The St. Agnes Academy Alumnae Association

Charles Long

September 8, 2021

After my many years at the university I saw Rose as not just an outstanding employee but an outstanding person. She always had a positive disposition. Whenever I had to go to the office she was always ready to help. She leaves we with a very positive memory.

Mattie Haynes

September 8, 2021

I made special trips to the Psychology Department just to visit with Rose. She always had a story to share. She was always professional and wore the nicest suits.

Renee Cogar

September 8, 2021

Getting to know and work with Rose at the University of Memphis was an enjoyable moment. She was always so encouraging and told the best (and funniest) stories. She absolutely loved and adored her family. I am truly grateful that I also had the opportunities to hold phone conversations with her after her retirement. You could feel her smile through the phone. She will truly be missed.

Diana Hatfield Loudakis

September 7, 2021

Rosie and my mother were cousins. They were close and continued keeping up with each other all their lives.

We connected with visits, dinners out, and Emily and Mary baby sitting. But one day Rose was watching my two year old at her house. Alek was running around her house, but when a commercial with music came on, my toddler ran to the tv and started dancing, and he had good rhythm too. Rose just thought that was the funniest thing ever, and talked about it every time I talked to her.

She was a fun cousin and good friend. She made you feel special. She was very special too. I loved her.

thomas fagan

September 7, 2021

Susie and I will long remember the smiling Rose Gaia in the psychology office. She was always there when we needed her. Her efforts to coordinate departmental gatherings were fantastic. She brought order to a lot of confusing things that needed to be done. The Lord is with you!
Tom and Susie Fagan

Patricia Malone

September 7, 2021

I am great full to have had the opportunity to care for my sweet I love her with all of my heart and she will be missed with love Patricia

Biography

Rose Radogna Gaia, of Memphis, Tennessee, passed away peacefully in her home on September 6th 2021. The daughter of Italian immigrants, Anthony Radogna and Domenica Lobianco, Rose was born on October 11, 1931 in Memphis, the youngest of six children. She was a graduate of St. Agnes Academy, and often expressed gratitude to the school’s Dominican Sisters for influencing her life. In July of 1954, Rose met the love of her life, Charlie Gaia. They were married for 36 years and raised a family of three boys and three girls.

Blessed with unfailing optimism, a ready smile, and a gift for putting others at ease, Rose attended mass at St. Louis Catholic Church, was a member of the parish for six decades, and sent all six of her children to St. Louis School. A lifelong member of Pleasant Acres Garden Club, Rose loved her neighborhood, and particularly her neighbors Rena, Inga and Ida, often referring to them as her “best buds.” Desiring to be of service, Rose later in life went to work in the psychology department at the University of Memphis, and in 1999 was honored with the Outstanding Employee Award. Retiring after 21 years, Rose often called her time at the university the best job she ever had.

She is preceded in death by her parents; her husband; her oldest son Chuck; three sisters, Celeste Lenti, Jennie Radogna, Mary Cianciolo; and two brothers, Michael Radogna and Joe Radogna. She is survived by three daughters and two sons, Renee Stern (Joel) of Wayne, Pennsylvania, Mary Adams (Bob), Emily Smith (Major), Marty Gaia (Angela) all of Memphis, and Gary Gaia (Christy) of Missouri City, Texas; nine grandchildren, Tripp Durham, Meredith Durham, Will Stern, Allison Tibbits, Caroline DeMoss, Robert Adams, Vince Gaia, Charlie Smith, Brenner Smith; and one great grandchild, Cameron Durham.

There will be a visitation from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 14, followed by the rosary at 7 p.m. at Memphis Funeral Home on Poplar Avenue. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, September 15 at St. Louis Catholic Church. Burial will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to St. Agnes Academy, University of Memphis, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, or St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.MemphisFuneralPoplar.com for the Gaia family.