Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Doris 'Dora' Piazza Maccani

SAINT PAUL, Minn. - Doris "Dora" Piazza Maccani, our beloved mother, Nonna and Bisnonna passed away peacefully, surrounded by her family on May 27, 2024, at Carondelet Village in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

Born on Jan. 17, 1923, to Italian immigrants Lorenzo and Maria (Delfavero) Piazza, Dora arrived on a cold winter day along with her twin sister, Flora. Weighing a little over three pounds at birth, Dora was frail at life's beginning. Her precious life blossomed and she lived life fully for 101 years, a blessing to countless people along the way. Her passing marks the end of her generation of the Piazza and the Maccani families, and she has now peacefully joined them.

Dora's childhood was marked with deep sadness when her twin sister, Flora, died a month before their seventh birthday. Her dad, Lorenzo, would pass away just a year later. But, amidst the heartache, Dora's recollection of her childhood was of being dearly loved by her devoted mother, Maria, and her two brothers, Efro and Ernie.

A highlight of Doris's early adulthood occurred in 1948 when she and her mother traveled by ship to their homeland, Lozzo di Cadore in the province of Belluno, Italy. Doris and her mother spent six months enjoying the wonderful hospitality of their Italian relatives, while also admiring the beauty and enjoying the food of Italy. The memories of this impressionable trip would remain with Doris the rest of her life.

On Oct. 19, 1949, Doris married Isadore (Izzy) Maccani at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Hurley, Wisconsin. They would make their home in Bessemer, Michigan, and raise their three children in the same house that Izzy was born and raised in, which was built by Izzy's father upon immigrating from Tres, Italy.

Both Doris and Izzy were immensely proud of their Italian heritage and Doris, following in her mother's footsteps, would become an excellent Italian cook. Her ravioli, gnocchi, lasagna and meatballs were said to be some of the best. One of Doris's greatest joys was cooking for her family, and she treasured those times gathered around the kitchen table with Izzy, their children and grandchildren. Doris was also incredibly generous in sharing her cooking with others. She would delight many in the Bessemer community with one of her wonderful Italian dishes when they were homebound, sick or alone. A treasured keepsake in the family is the cookbook created in Doris' honor, "Made With Love: Nonne's recipes."

Doris gave selflessly, loved expansively and touched the lives of many family and friends. She was a person of contagious joy, incredible kindness, boundless gratitude, adventurous spirit and deep faith. Doris was happiest when surrounded by her family, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and she was actively engaged in and supportive of their daily lives. An eloquent letter writer with beautiful penmanship, she was constantly writing letters to her children and grandchildren, often enclosing a little money for a special treat. She loved being a devoted mother and grandmother and she aspired to instill in her family the virtues of faith, generosity and compassion for others, which she lived so fully in her own daily life.

Doris was active in the Bessemer community and St. Sebastian Catholic Church for nearly 70 years. She loved going to daily mass and one of the many ways she lived her faith was by helping her neighbors through countless daily acts of kindness and service.

For nearly 30 years Doris enjoyed summers at the cottage on Lake Gogebic with her family. She loved being outdoors and was an avid walker well into her 90's. Regardless of how Doris and Izzy spent their leisure time or where they would travel, the times with their children and grandchildren were their most treasured.

In 2016, at the age of 93, Doris left her beloved Bessemer community and moved to Saint Paul, Minnesota, to be near her children. She loved spending her days with her children and Sunday dinners at their homes but her heart always remained equally with her friends back in Bessemer.

Doris is survived by her sons Joe (Kim) of Bloomington, and Tom (Pam) of Shoreview; daughter Mary (Rob) of Saint Paul; grandchildren, Elizabeth, Sarah, Claire, Sam and Logan; and great-grandchildren, Cillian and Róisín.

A Mass of Christian Burial was held at Carondelet Village on Tuesday, June 4. Burial will take place this summer at Hillcrest Cemetery in Bessemer.

In lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to St. Sebastian Catholic Church, 212 East Iron St., Bessemer, MI 49911.

"I thank my God whenever I think of you; and every time I pray for all of you, I pray with joy. You have a permanent place in my heart." St. Paul to the Ephesians