By: Bill Cushing – July, 2022
This month I would like to take a break from talking about TV to talk about something more personal.
On June 7, 2022, my father-in-law, Isidore Trovato passed away at the age of 87, after a brave fight with cancer.
Many of you reading this article may have known Izzy, and even if you didn’t know him, you may have spoken with him at one time or another. He spoke with many people over the years.
Whether it be at Heav’nly Donuts, the Nevins Library, Market Basket, or a local restaurant, you could always find Izzy engaging in a conversation with someone. Sometimes with a person he had known for many years, sometimes with a person he had just met. But regardless of their relationship, the conversation was always the same to Izzy.
He spoke to everyone he met in the same way. He was always genuinely interested in what you had to say, and what your story was. By the end of the conversation, he would know where you grew up, where you went to school, and maybe even the names of members of your family. It was touching to read the condolences sent along from many of these people who, although they barely knew him, he left an impact on just the same.
He was born in Lawrence to Salvatore and Maria (Finocchiaro) Trovato, where he was raised with siblings Mario, Agnes, and Bertha. Izzy went on to graduate from Central Catholic in 1952, and then received his B.S. in Pharmacy from Massachusetts College of Pharmacy in 1956, and his M.S. degree from Purdue University.
As a life-long resident of the Valley, Izzy and his wife Marion owned and operated Berkeley Pharmacy in Lawrence for 20 years from 1968 to 1988. In that time, Izzy became a fixture in the community. “Izzy the Pharmacist” was always there to help anyone that came into the store, to provide a nice conversation, a listening ear, and some encouraging words to those he spoke to.
But he would tell you that his proudest accomplishment, by far, was the family he raised along with his beloved wife of 57 years, Marion (Khoury) Trovato. Together they had 6 beautiful children. Daughters Gina Trovato, Susan Verrette, Jo-Ann Cushing, Jennifer Burdick, Maria Bonanno, and his only son James Trovato. He also had thirteen grandchildren and one great grandchild. All of them, including myself and his other sons and daughters in-law, felt the impact of his life and are feeling the impact of his passing. You only needed to spend a few minutes at any family gathering to feel the love and respect that Izzy received from his family.
For me, I joined the family in 1995 when I married Jo-Ann. I felt welcome from the moment I met Izzy and Marion. In 2002, when my sons were 4 and 6, my father died suddenly at the age of 68. It impacted our family tremendously. During that time, Izzy was a comforting presence in my life and has been ever since. He went out of his way to show his love and support through those difficult times. He was also a wonderful grandfather to our sons Billy and Sean. Always attending their baseball and basketball games and various life events over the years. But more importantly, being a role model, a solid and constant presence in their lives. Someone they could spend time with and share their experiences.
We will all miss the time we spent together. We will miss him stopping by to see how we were doing. We will miss the conversations. I will miss the texts from him asking me how work was, or what I thought of the latest developments with the Red Sox. He was always checking in to see how my mom and sister were doing too. When my mom had some recent health issues, he checked in every day to see how she was progressing. It’s the type of person he was. He cared.
Although we will miss him immensely, and the void will never be filled. The pain of his loss will ease over time but will never fully dissipate. We are sad that he is no longer here, but we are so glad that we have the memories of the times we spent together, and the lasting impact and influence he had on all of us.
I’m sure, right now, he is having many wonderful conversations with his friends and family that he has been reunited with. They have a lot to catch up on. For Izzy, that’s heaven.
Rest in Peace, Izzy. You were truly one of a kind.
If you knew Izzy, and would like to share some stories, thoughts, or condolences, I would love to hear from you. You can reach out to me at email@example.com.
Donations can be made in Izzy’s name to Central Catholic High School, 300 Hampshire St., Lawrence, MA 01841. To make a donation contact David Erwin at firstname.lastname@example.org. ◊