On August 26, 2023, Merle Ruth Piazza, went home to be with the Lord. She was 87.
Merle was born in Paterson, N.J. on April 2, 1936, to the late Luther and Ruth (Irwin) Rose. Her father was in the U.S. Army as an Airplane Mechanic and was stationed in China during World War II. Merle spent the early years of her life growing up in China. Her family moved back to New Jersey and she attended grammar school, School #9 in Paterson and graduated from Hawthorn High School, class of 1954.
Mrs. Piazza married the love of her life, Joe Piazza, in 1957 and were married for 54 years. They lived in Lodi, N.J. before buying a house in North Haledon. In 1968 they moved again to Pattenburg, N.J. and stayed there until moving to their retirement house in Milford, DE.
Joe & Merle owned and operated a Western Auto Store in Clinton, N.J. The store eventually went out of business and Merle took a job in the N.J. Department of Corrections as a Sewing Industry Supervisor for 20 years, retiring in 2004. While there, she touched many lives of those incarcerated where she inspired the inmates for the better and to reach attainable goals.
She was former member of the New Life Baptist Church and a current member of Pilgrim Baptist Church.
Mrs. Piazza enjoyed cooking, baking, traveling the world with her late husband, and entertaining family and friends.
She would remind everyone who visited her house that she was a “tough Irishman from New Jersey”, all the while being hospitable, open and generous. She especially enjoyed making her St. Paddy’s Day dinner. She actually tried to solve world hunger one dinner at a time.
Merle is survived by her son, Jim Piazza and his wife Debra. She was preceded in death by her husband, Joe Piazza, her son, David Robert Piazza, her parents, Luke and Ruth and her sister Ellen Rose.
A memorial service will be held at Rogers Funeral Home on Wednesday 8/30 at 7PM.To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Merle Ruth Piazza, please visit our flower store.