Deborah Martin Pusinelli (Debbie), 66, of Western Springs, passed away peacefully in her sleep on Tuesday, October 6th, after a courageous eight-year battle with Melanoma. She was born in Carlisle, Pennsylvania to Edwin and Cornelia Martin. Debbie grew up in Pittsburgh with her four siblings. Her childhood was filled with family adventures, laughter, and love.
Debbie attended Ohio Wesleyan University and the University of Pittsburgh where she earned her B.A. in Child Development and her M.A. in Rehabilitation Therapy Counseling. She worked as the Rehabilitation Coordinator for Westmoreland County Pennsylvania where she helped families navigate caring for children with special needs. While at Ohio Wesleyan, she met the love of her life, Mark Pusinelli.
Debbie and Mark were married in 1979, and together they raised their family in Western Springs. Throughout their 41 years of marriage they created a warm home, raised four children, and always kept the back door open for friends and neighbors.
Debbie was a valued member of the Western Springs community. Over the years, she worked as a preschool teacher at Grand Avenue Preschool and was the Coordinator of Religious Education at St. John of the Cross and St. Cletus.
She had a passion for volunteerism, and her involvement was vast and included work as the PTO president, Parent-Community Network Chair, and making meals for BEDS. She was involved in far too many other organizations to list. Debbie did her volunteering quietly and never wanted accolades. When she was awarded the Western Springs Citizen of the Year of 2005, she was embarrassed by the attention.
Debbie touched the lives of many and held her friends dear. She was the first to make a meal for someone in need, she was always ready to send a kind card or a thank you note, and she was known as a compassionate listener to everyone. Debbie was an amazing balance of warmth, gentleness, fierce strength and perseverance.
Even though Debbie cared deeply about supporting her friends and community, her number one priority was always her family. Her husband, children, and grandchildren were the center of her world and she always put them first--they were her joy and her light. She was the world’s greatest Grammy and found nothing better than playing with her seven grandchildren, especially at the beach. Her children and grandchildren are her legacy.
Debbie is survived by her spouse, Mark, her four children, Christopher Pusinelli (Mariko), Anna Monahan (Russell), Lisa Marcus (Charlie), Catherine Demkovich (Michael), her seven grandchildren, Henry, Mae, Ingrid, Celia, Ava, Aidan, and Hadley, her sisters, Linda Trusilo and Cindy Pezze, her brothers, Thomas Martin and George Martin, and her six nephews and five nieces.
Her funeral will be private, and there will be a celebration of her life in the spring. In lieu of flowers, please make donations in her name to the Melanoma Research Foundation (melanoma.org) or to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer (alexslemonade.org).
Arrangements entrusted to Adolf Funeral Home – Willowbrook, 630-325-2300 or adolfservices.com