Shrewsbury – How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it! Vinnie Mastro lived every day of his life touching people with profound yet simple kindnesses. This will remain his legacy and hopefully inspire everyone reading this to pause, reflect…and perhaps do something kind, either random or planned.
Vinnie’s world was rooted in three basic necessities of life: family, faith and work. His home on Caroline Avenue is where he was born; it was the only home he ever knew. Vinnie’s life, within a square mile of his much-loved town of Shrewsbury, was devoted to making the community a better place. For 84 years, the parish community of Saint Anne served his spiritual needs. He was a familiar face and a loved employee at Spag’s Supply Co. where he worked for over 49 years.
During the most Holy Week of the year…and on Easter Sunday, March 27, 2016 Vinnie found life’s eternal rest. Alleluia! He died at home after a valiant battle with cancer.
Vincent William Mastro was born May 24, 1931, one of 13 children of Italian immigrants William F. and Viola (Congahilia) Mastro Sr. Blessed with the love of a large close-knit family, Vinnie learned at an early age about sharing, serving, helping others and above all, being mindful of God and all of His blessings. A graduate of the former Maj. Howard W. Beal High School, class of 1949, Vinnie honorably served in the United States Army during the Korean conflict.
Given his endearing personality and willingness to help, Vinnie will be fondly remembered by everyone he met at Spag’s Supply Co., be they co-workers or shoppers. As a faithful friend and trusted confidant of the Borgatti family Vin maintained a similar work ethic. From his entry level position at Spag’s, he worked his way up to become general manager through sheer dedication. Much of the success of Spag’s was owing to people like Vinnie Mastro who helped develop the general store into an integral part of the town and its people.
Mother Teresa said, ‘Not all of us can do great things but we can all do small things with great love.’ ‘Uncle Vin,’ as he was often referred to by family, friends, and doctors, everyone at St. Anne’s and even the undertaker, was loved by all. One of the many added benefits of friendship with Vin would often be a doorbell ring…a smile…and his signature ‘hello’ along with a plate of his famous scones.
Saint Anne’s Church was Vinnie’s spiritual and second home. He gave to the church in many different ways and out of his own volition. He did nothing out of obligation but rather out of love, dedication and a sense of giving back, quietly believing that it makes the world a better place. He quickly became life-long friends with all the pastors, associates and staff at the church. As a trusted parishioner and friend, Vin had keys to the church and ancillary buildings, and would open the church early every Sunday morning. He was active in the CYC program and served as Eucharistic minister and volunteered in its free medical clinic. His absence will undoubtedly leave a void but his mark left at St. Anne’s will never be forgotten. Vinnie’s work here on earth is done.
How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it! Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer over a year ago, Vinnie gave it all the fight he had in him. He remarked how he was blessed with over another year of life to make more memories. He remained overwhelmed and humbled with the day to day kindnesses everyone extended him, reaping the love he sowed for 84 years. He made certain to thank everyone and say “I love you.” Vin wanted to be sure to thank Dr. Alan Jackson and his staff, the staff of Jewish Health & Hospice for their wonderful caregiving and ability to keep him in the comfort of his home including Dennis Paquette, Donna Robert, Emily Pattee, Sr. Pat Foley, Blanca Galvez, Mark Clouthier and Margaret Serwaah.
Vinnie died knowing his faith would unite him with God and reunite him to his parents and siblings in heaven, Mary Driscoll, Margaret Archambo, Helen Zingarelli, Frances Ruggere, Eva Rose, Lena Chenevert, John Mastro, William Mastro, Anna Mastro, Benny Mastro and a host of people Vin knew as friends. Surely there’s a wonderful reunion in heaven!
He leaves behind his brother, Anthony R. Mastro and his wife Betty of Shrewsbury; his sister, Elsie M. Shean of Worcester; and many nieces and nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews, and great-grandnieces and great-grandnephews.
Family and friends will honor and remember Vinnie’s life by gathering for calling hours Tuesday, March 29, from 4-7 p.m., at Heald & Chiampa Funeral Directors ~ The Sumner House, 5 Church Road, On the Common, Shrewsbury Center. His funeral Mass will be celebrated Wednesday, March 30, at 11 a.m., in Saint Anne’s Church, 130 Boston Tpke., Shrewsbury. Everyone is kindly requested to go directly to the church. Burial with military honors will follow in Mountain View Cemetery.
Honor Vinnie’s memory with a contribution to St. Anne’s Church, 130 Boston Tpke., Shrewsbury, MA 01545.