Like all mothers, she always put her family first. She had such a lively spirit and determination to always get things done, no matter how difficult the task.
She cared for her family, but she also cared for the people of her community. Island Park Mayor Mike McGinty told the Herald that when he was a newspaper delivery boy and delivered papers to my house, she often invited him in for soup or hot chocolate.
That was Mama. She served soup to the local paperboy and her famous lasagna to President Reagan and many of my Senate colleagues. Mama, as long as I live, there will never be a better cook than you.
It’s never easy to lose a parent, now matter how old they are. Mama lived a tremendous life, and enjoyed all 99 years of it. She dined with presidents and celebrities and traveled the world. But most important, she was the heart and soul of our family. She helped raise 13 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren. In fact, she attended the wedding of her oldest great-grandchild last spring.
Her love of family and country will stay with us forever. I was so blessed to have her as part of my life, both personally and professionally, for so long.
Mama’s death will leave a void in my life, and my life without her will never be the same, but her legacy will live on, you can count on it.
RIP, Mama.Al D’Amato, a former U.S. senator from New York, is the founder of Park Strategies LLC, a public policy and business development firm. Comments about this column? ADAmato@liherald.com.