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B: 1948-06-08
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25 Bellevue Ave
Bristol, CT 06010
Phone: (860) 582-8129
Fax: (860) 589-9944
James Mele

James B. Mele

Wednesday, April 10th, 2019
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Obituary

James B. Mele, 70, of Bristol, died on April 10, 2019 after a long illness. He was born in Bristol on June 8, 1948, the son of John and Jean (Pierce) Mele. He attended local schools and went on to graduate from St. Lawrence University, University College, Dublin, and The Antioch International Writing Program. He taught English for forty years in private schools and colleges in the US and Europe. He retired from St. Peter-Marian H.S. in Worchester, MA in 2014. At various times in the course of his career he also worked as a construction worker, farm hand, and a coach for football and wrestling. He is survived by his sister Janet Schooler of Ridgefield, CT; his nephew John D. Mele III of North Attleboro, MA and several cousins. He was predeceased by his mother and father, and his brother, John D. Mele, Jr. James was an avid reader with wide interests, but with a particular enthusiasm for topics related to Irish and Italian history, culture, and literature. He was a widely published, prize-winning poet and short story writer. The highlight of his writing career was the publication of his book, Dancing in Eurynome’s Shoes. He was a member of St. Joseph’s parish and the Farmington Valley Chapter of the Connecticut Poetry Society. A funeral service will be held Monday, April 15, at 11am at DuPont Funeral Home, 25 Bellevue Ave., Bristol. Burial will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery. Calling hours will be Monday morning from 10-11am at the funeral home.
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Service Details

  • Public Visitation

    Monday, April 15th, 2019 | 10:00am - 11:00am
    When
    Monday, April 15th, 2019 10:00am - 11:00am
    Location
    DuPont Funeral Home
    Address
    25 Bellevue Ave.
    Bristol, CT 06010
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
  • Service

    Monday, April 15th, 2019 | 11:00am
    When
    Monday, April 15th, 2019 11:00am
    Location
    DuPont Funeral Home
    Address
    25 Bellevue Ave.
    Bristol, CT 06010
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Officiant
    Father Ivan Ramirez
  • Interment

    Location
    St. Joseph Cemetery
    Address
    522 Terryville Ave
    Bristol, CT 06010
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email

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L

Lori

Posted at 12:31am
I was so sorry to learn of Mr. Mele’s passing!
He was one of my teachers at Wykem Rise school!
He was really a great man!
Rest In Peace
A

Alessandro Cassano

Posted at 04:02pm
We, Italian relatives of our dear cousin Jim, are very sad to hear now of his loss. Our hearts cry. In 2004 we were successfull to get our family in contact again from the two sides of the Atlantic after 60years!!! (Jim's father was actually in Italy in 1940s during his military service and came to visit his italian relatives) After that, they were no more able to comunicate each other. In 2007 Jim and his father John came to visit us in Italy in the town of Acquaviva delle Fonti, birthplace of John'father. We had two fantastic weeks. We are still so grateful for their visit.
We will miss you a lot. We will miss our monthly e-mails, your greeting cards and our phone calls during Christmas Holidays.
We hope that Janet may read this tribute one day. We would like to express all our love and stay close to her. We will pray for the peace of his soul and we will never Forget him.
Italian cousins: Lucrezia, Leonardo, Mimmo, Mimma, Alessandro e Francesco.
E-mail: casalex@hotmail.it
MS

Mark Sachner

Posted at 11:24am
Jim was a great presence in our class at Bristol Central High School, and later, for me personally, as a classmate and housemate at St. Lawrence University. I can remember, Janet, the days I dropped in on your home on Oehler Drive, and how welcome your family made me feel. What a terrific guy your brother was—smart, clever, witty, and kind; tough minded and combative, yet sensitive and compassionate toward us fellow-sufferers of the human condition. He was one heck of a poet, with an artist’s instinct, especially in his latest work, for both the stark contrasts and common ground between life and death. Physically, intellectually, and emotionally he was tough when he had to be and we needed him to be. He seemed like a perfect-storm mix of the passion, humor, cynicism, and joy that came from his Irish and Italian sides alike—opinionated and argumentative, but in a way that pulled people in rather than shut them out. What a sad loss, but also what a gift that he has brought to all of us who have been joined in our memories of him and through his writing, his teaching, and his company. Janet and family, many kind thoughts and deepest sympathies. - Mark Sachner, Milwaukee
MP

Michelle Paradis

Posted at 09:13am
No more struggles, no more pain will you feel, only the sweet embrace of your family and friends who have passed through the gates before you. Your smile and words shall be missed here in this world, but, your memory shall live on through your works of thoughts carefully crafted and put to paper. You gave us something special that will now be cherished in our hearts and minds, that gift was you. Rest in peace cousin Jimmy, I will miss your smile, but, I know the family is happy to have you there with them sharing your stories and poems.

Ryan Carey

Posted at 08:18pm
Mr. Mele was a legend in the halls of St. Peter Marian. To this day, I still reminisce and tell stories about the things "Mad Dog Mele" would do and say. He had the love, respect, and admiration of both his students and peers. He was notoriously strict, but he was always fair and looked out for the best interest of the kids. He embodied everything a catholic educator should aspire to be. He was always willing to help his students in any capacity and you could usually find him at any big SPM sporting event supporting his students.

Mr. Mele was as hilarious as he was opinionated and he wasn't afraid to come off as politically incorrect either. In the back of his classroom, there was a quotation hung up. It read, "If you always keep an open mind, you will wind up with an empty head - James Mele". Mr. Mele would hold his students accountable, but could make them laugh simultaneously. He had a unique knack for bringing out the best in kids.

Mr. Mele was one of the most popular faculty members on campus, but he always remained out of the spotlight. Most years the graduating senior class would elect him to give a speech at the baccalaureate mass, but he would always decline. Although he was often attending SPM sporting events, he would sit alone away from the crowd wearing his iconic scally cap. Most notably, when Mr. Mele decided to retire, he did not tell anyone until the school year ended. Mr. Mele was simply too humble to take up any of the spotlight.

Catholic schools are worth attending because of people like Mr. Mele. He was a great guy and the communities he touched won't be the same without him. You will be missed Mr. Mele.

- Ryan Carey
St. Peter Marian '16
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