Mary Fantina, 96, died after a very brief illness. She was born in St. John's, Newfoundland (before it was part of Canada) to Edward and Anne Furlong. She attended Mercy Convent School and became proficient in music: voice, piano, and violin. She performed (violin) on the radio in St. John's and played the organ for various functions after her marriage. At school she also played ice hockey in the girl's ice hockey league.
During World War II she met and married Bernardsville resident Michael Fantina. After the war they moved back to Bernardsville.
Mrs. Fantina was an active member of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church throughout her life and a daily communicant while she was able. She organized and lead several pilgrimages including a diocesan pilgrimage to Washington D.C., she was a Eucharistic Minster and Parish Visitor though her 80s. Mary was active in St. Elizabeth School throughout the years her seven children were students there: member of the PTA for over 25 years, den mother to cub scouts, writing class plays, running rummage sales to support the school, volunteering in the school library, and she was very active in the Christmas fairs they had at St. Elizabeth's in the 50s, 60, and 70s. She also did volunteer work in the Immaculata High School Library in Somerville, N.J. for a few years.
Mary and her sister-in-law, Ann Jordan, started a weekly Rosary at Sacred Heart Chapel in 1972 for an end to abortion. She was very active in the pro-life movement, writing letters, participating in Life Chain in Somerville, N.J., and praying in front of clinics.
Mary is survived by six of her seven children, Michael, Mary, Robert and his wife Edwina Stone, Joann, David and his wife Jeanne (nee Navin), Steven; and grandchildren, Travis Fantina and his wife Vivian (nee Holden), Andrew Fantina and John Paul Fantina; sister-in-law Ann Jordan; along with dozens of nephews, nieces, grandnephews, and grandnieces. She was pre-deceased by her husband of 71 years, Michael, and her son, Richard.
Visitation will be held on April 23, 2017 at Gallaway and Crane Funeral, 101 S. Finley Avenue, Basking Ridge, NJ from 1:00 – 3:00 pm. Funeral Mass will be held on Tuesday, April 25, 2017, 10:00am at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church, Bernardsville, NJ. Interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery, Basking Ridge. For further information, or to light an online condolence candle please visit www.gcfuneralhome.com