Obituary of Natalie Sparago
Natalie Sparago, 88 of Cresskill, NJ died on Friday, November 11, 2022, from natural causes. In recent years, her health had deteriorated following a series of falls as a result of Meniere's disease.
Born in New York City in 1934, Natalie was the daughter of Irving and Rose (Grossman) Berger. She spent her youth in the Bronx where she graduated from James Monroe High School in 1952.
Natalie married Bernie Sparago in 1955 and moved to the Inwood section of Manhattan, where her eldest daughter Bernice was born in 1956. Natalie’s main focus for the next 25 plus years was raising her four children -- Bernice, Nadine, Gary and Robert. After leaving the city for the suburbs of Spring Valley, Natalie learned to drive in her first car, a Rambler.
In 1970, she and her family moved to Northridge, CA, where she spent the next three decades. Throughout this time Natalie enjoyed taking classes at Pierce College, and worked as a special education aide and then as an administrator with LA Unified School District.
Natalie was gracious, had a good sense of humor, and made friends easily across generations. Her interests and activities were diverse. She was an avid reader, gifted knitter and crocheter, and loved being outdoors while being a proud member of the Sierra Club. She had a green thumb and thoroughly enjoyed tending to her many plants and orange trees. She enjoyed playing tennis, excelled in her bowling league, participated in yoga sessions into her early 80’s, and loved playing Scrabble. Over the years, she found pleasure in observing the Jewish traditions and holidays, with her favorite being Passover.
After retiring to Florida in her mid-60s, she stayed active and volunteered at a children’s literacy program. Throughout her life, Natalie maintained close contact with a tight knit group of girlfriends from childhood and public school. One of her favorite activities in her teens was taking the subway with friends to Rockaway Beach in Queens. Natalie also had a special kinship with her older brother Sheldon. They stayed in close contact despite living physically far apart most of their lives.
She is survived by her four children, son-in-law Gordon, daughter-in-law Connie, and four grandchildren, Joshua, Catherine, Nicki, and Justin, whom she adored. We will miss Natalie dearly, more than words can ever express, but she will always be remembered and forever remain in our hearts. A memorial service will be held at Eden Memorial Chapels in Fort Lee, NJ, on Sunday November 27th 2022 from 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM.
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