An active member of the community


Published in the August 7, 2015 edition

MELROSE — Lillian R. (Ricci) Morelli of Melrose died on July 31 at the age of 86.

Lillian was born in Medford on Jan. 19, 1929 to Daniel and Effie (Ramsell) Ricci. She was raised in Everett and graduated from Everett High School. Not long after high school, Lillian married Joseph Costa and the two settled down in Melrose to raise their family. Lillian ended up spending the majority of her life in Melrose. After the untimely death of Joseph, Lillian later married Sabatino Morelli and had three more children.

In her spare time, Lillian loved to knit, sew and do embroidery. Around the holidays, she loved to bake her famous Pizzelle cookies. Lillian was very involved around Melrose. She was a member of the Melrose 200 Club, the Community Association and the St. Mary Sodality. Lillian could often be seen around St. Mary Church helping in any way she could. She truly had a great personality. She would always like to joke and give people a hard time.

Lillian always enjoyed being around home and attending parties and being close to family and friends was her priority. When she did travel, she enjoyed going to Rockport, Maine and going out on harbor cruises on the Spirit of Boston. Lillian was a passionate sports fan, she loved her Boston teams as well as watching golf. She was always ready to talk sports with whomever she could.

The Morelli family would like to thank everyone at Wilmington Health Care Center for the wonderful care that Lillian received from all the staff members.

Lillian was the beloved wife of the late Joseph Costa and the late Sabatino Morelli. She was the loving mother of Joseph Costa of Florida, Lillian Zarella and her husband David of Melrose, the late Ralph Costa, Daniel Morelli of East Boston, Sandra Dober and her husband Keith of Florida and Robert Morelli and his wife Joni of Reading. She is also survived by 11 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. She was the loving sister of the late Daniel Ricci Jr.

Visitation will be held on Friday, Aug. 7 at the Gately Funeral Home 79 West Foster St., Melrose, from 4-7 p.m. Lillian’s funeral will be held at the Gately Funeral Home on Aug. 8 at 8 a.m., followed by a Mass of Christian burial at St. Mary Church, Herbert Street, Melrose at 9 a.m. Interment will take place following the funeral Mass at Holy Cross Cemetery, Malden. Relatives in friends are respectfully invited to attend. In lieu of flowers contributions can be made to the Melrose Veterans Relief Fund, c/o Veteran’s Office, 562 Main St., Melrose MA 02176. To send a message of condolence, visit