Virginia Gifford Luciani

Virginia Louise Luciani (nee Gifford) died peacefully in the early afternoon hours of January 19, 2015, at Morningstar Senior Living in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Frank, her husband of 61 years; her daughter Patricia Vitelli; granddaughter Nicole DeHerrera; and a grandson Richard Vitelli were at her bedside as she passed over to join the Lord.

Virginia was born to Nell & Ernest Gifford on June 13, 1934. She grew up in Kirksville, Missouri, where she graduated from Kirksville Senior High School in 1952. This is also where she met and married Frank (on Valentine’s Day in 1953). Frank is a born and bred Brooklynite, and a running joke in the family was that Missouri girl Virginia had never heard of pizza until she met him. As a result of their union, Virginia had the opportunity to travel with Frank to his many stations over the next 25 years; including postings in Maryland, where Patricia was born in 1954; Kansas City, where their second daughter, Connie, was born in 1956; Canada; Florida; and Colorado Springs twice, where they finally settled in 1967. It was here that she earned her Associate of Arts degree from Pike’s Peak Community College. Virginia loved gardening and raised the most beautiful roses. She also enjoyed going out to lunch with friends and family.

Virginia was the most loving, patient and kind wife mother and friend. She was a wonderful role model for her daughters and, later, her grandchildren. She was cherished and will be missed immensely.

In addition to her husband and daughters, Virginia is survived by her brother Robert Gifford; grandchildren Frank Pabon, Richard Vitelli and Nicole DeHerrera; thirteen great grandchildren; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews on both the Gifford and the Luciani sides of the family including, niece Janice Thomas of Bolliver, Missouri, and nephew, Timothy Sykes of Dallas, Texas; and step-niece, Beth Frye of Columbia, Missouri, and step-nephew Sam Myers of Alexandria, Virginia.

She was preceded in death by her sister, Helen (Mrs. Clyde) Myers.

Cappadona Funeral Home at 1020 E. Fillmore Street in Colorado Springs handled arrangements. Services were held at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Colorado Springs on January 30, 2015 with interment following at Evergreen Cemetery, Colorado Springs.