Shrewsbury – Michelina (Nardella) Villani, 83, skilled seamstress and dressmaker, of Shrewsbury and formerly of San Marco in Lamis, Foggia, Italy, passed away peacefully on April 27, 2021 after a lengthy battle with ALS.
She leaves her beloved husband of 61 years, Michele Villani; her children, Angelo Villani and his wife Gilda Grassi of Shrewsbury, Rosanna Villani and her husband Anthony Dixon of Boylston, Giuseppe (Joe) Villani and his wife Heidi of Shrewsbury, Luciano Villani and his wife Michele of Shrewsbury, Mario Villani and his wife Gail of Boylston, and Davide Villani and his wife Christina of Shrewsbury; her brother, Luigi (Gino) Nardella and his wife Caterina of Shrewsbury; and her grandchildren, Michael, Olivia, Gabriella, Isabella, Michelangelo, Savina, Davide, Jack, Domenico, Giuseppe, Sophia, and Francesco. Michelina was predeceased by her brother, Angelo Nardella of San Paolo di Civitate, Italy.
Born to the late Maria LaPorta and Michele Nardella, and raised by Arcangela Masullo and Giuseppe Villani, Michelina was educated in her hometown and apprenticed as a seamstress. She and her husband emigrated to the U.S. in 1971 and settled in Shrewsbury with their five children to begin their life in the U.S.
Michelina owned her own seamstress business for over 40 years, creating some of the most beautiful wedding dresses with clients throughout the Northeast. Her greatest gift was giving that special bride a unique item on their wedding day. She had a way of making everyone feel special. Her shop was full of pictures of brides on their wedding day and pictures of her family and grandchildren.
One of her greatest pleasures was Sunday Lunches, a gathering of 26. A full house was her love. She saw her family grow from six children to six spouses and then 12 grandchildren. She will simply be remembered as Nonna!
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Compassionate Care ALS (www.ccals.org/donate).
Relatives and friends are invited to visit with the Villani family on Saturday, May 1, from 10-11 a.m., at St. Mary’s Church, 640 Main St., Shrewsbury. Her funeral Mass will be celebrated at 11 a.m., followed by burial in Mountain View Cemetery of Shrewsbury.
The Britton-Shrewsbury Funeral Home is honored to be assisting with arrangements.