In Remembrance

Tartaglia, Leonard

tartagliaMarch 25, 2013

Leonard James Tartaglia was all about love – family, friends, his church, nature, working his lands, and especially love of his spouse, Barbara and his Creator.
Lenny, as he was affectionately known, had a beautiful way of reaching out to anyone and everyone and engaging their spirit. He was a vigorous fighter for human dignity, social justice, civil rights, women and the poor. Lenny was an inspiration and will long be remembered and loved.
Lenny, 83, of Columbia, beloved husband of Barbara (Brodeur) Tartaglia, passed away Monday, March 25, 2013 at home.
Born Sept. 13, 1929 in Wallingford, he was a son of the late Leonardo and Jennie (Freschi) Tartaglia. He was a graduate of the St Thomas Seminary in Bloomfield, St Mary's Seminary in Baltimore and Boston College's School of Social Work. Lenny's formal priesthood was spent in East Hartford, Ansonia and most memorably at St. Michael's in the North End of Hartford. He passionately believed in the servant church and the pastoral role of the priesthood. His strong devotion to the priesthood saw him elected to serve as head of the priests' senate locally and on the board nationally. His devotion to the Mass and timely sermons calling us all to live the gospel were an inspiration. He had a great love and respect for all peoples and a lifelong dedication and commitment to and work for social justice. Much of his work locally was initiated and planned in the basement of St. Michael's Community Center and through the Catholic Interracial Council. He led and participated in many projects for equal housing, fair employment, prison ministry and educational opportunities. He prodded the church and local businesses and groups to step forward and make life better for those most in need. Lenny marched in Selma and at the March on Washington to stand with those demanding dignity and equality for the Black community. Lenny also joined Fr. Groppi in his fight for the poor in Chicago.

Through his years as a professor in the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of South Carolina he passed on his passion for social justice and community organization and service to his students. He was sought out and worked to establish multiple women's shelters in parts of rural South Carolina. He maintained a boundless joy of life and special love for and interaction with children and teen, including of course, his many nieces and nephews. The light that shone from his eyes as he glimpsed a child or teased a teen was returned by the love and joy that shone back from them. He reached out tenderly to the elderly and sick. As a friend said, "Lenny never met a stranger."
In addition to his loving wife of 34 years, he leaves a sister and brother, Marianna and John Tartaglia, both of Wallingford; and numerous extended family members and friends. Including his parents, he was predeceased by four siblings, Rose Fazzino and Frank, Dave and Albert Tartaglia.
The Mass of Resurrection will be celebrated 11 a.m. Saturday, April 6, at the Church of the Holy Family, 185 Church St., Rte. 85, Hebron. There are no calling hours and burial will be private. It is requested that no flowers be sent. Those who wish may make a contribution to a charity in keeping with Lenny's spirit of justice and love. Care of arrangements has been entrusted to the Aurora-McCarthy Funeral Home of Colchester.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.

Len joined CORPUS in 1982.



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