Former Long Beach city treasurer Catherine Pirrone, known for her kindness and patience, has died.
Pirrone, who served for 43 years in the tax collections department and as treasurer for Long Beach, died Dec. 26 after being diagnosed with brain cancer. She was 78.
Pirrone was remembered by her family and city officials for her cheerful greeting to residents and caring demeanor in and out of the office.
Her husband, Vincent Pirrone, a former City Court Judge and Atlantic Beach Village justice, said she even welcomed an angry taxpayer with a smile after the resident paid his bill with thousands of pennies, which he dropped on her desk.
“She was a great person to work for. I learned from her,” said Peggy Fraser, who works as a tax assessor. “She was a good teacher, who taught the values and how to succeed. It takes a lot of patience and a very patient person.”
Catherine Pirrone was born in Manhattan and moved to Long Beach with her parents when she was 12 after spending summers at a bungalow by the beach.
She met her husband at a beach concession stand when she was 14 and they started dating years later after they reconnected in church in Long Beach’s West End, her daughter Maria Pirrone said.
She was hired by the city out of high school when she was selected among the top scorers on a commercial workforce test, her daughter said.
“She was one of the kindest, sweetest ladies,” Maria Pirrone said. “She was beautiful inside and out.”
Catherine Pirrone and her husband lived most of their life in Long Beach, but moved to Atlantic Beach after retiring, Vincent Pirrone said.
Catherine Pirrone, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002, volunteered for CancerCare and Long Beach Medical Center, which closed after superstorm Sandy. Her hobbies included skiing, horseback riding and traveling.
She is survived by her husband; her daughter Maria, 52, of Rockville Centre; and three grandsons.
A memorial Mass is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Saturday at St. Agnes Cathedral in Rockville Centre.