Peabody — Adeena “Deena” Antonio (née Anasoulis) of Peabody passed away Monday, October 29, in the company of her family and loved ones. She was married 57 years to her beloved husband, George Antonio, also of Peabody.
Deena was born September 26, 1932, in Schenectady, N.Y., to parents Louie and Alberta Anasoulis. Her family moved to Holten Street in Peabody when she was six years old; her brother Peter, one year her senior, played regularly with George Antonio, whom she would marry 17 years later. At Samuel Brown School, she met her lifelong friend Pat Brophy, and at Peabody High School, she met another “sister”, Aspacia “Aspie” (Gargas) Cassidy. After her graduation in 1951, she attended Endicott Junior College in Beverly. George and Adeena began “going steady” in 1953, and the high school sweethearts were married July 3, 1955, at St. Vasilios Greek Orthodox Church.
A loving mother, Deena was renowned for her unceasing dedication to family life. With George, she raised five children – Donna, Ellen, James, George Jr., and Louis – to whom she devoted herself entirely. In addition to caring for her children, Deena worked in Human Resources at Jordan Marsh (now Macy’s, at the North Shore Mall) for over 25 years, saving her paychecks to assure her children had memorable birthday and Christmas celebrations. In her personal journal, she wrote to her children: “Growing up I felt that I could trust you to make good decisions and you were the children I had always wanted.” Her friends and family have fond memories of her firm, yet caring, parenting, her gentle kisses, and her traditional Sunday dinners.
Deena was also known for her exuberance and her love of life. In her later years, she fulfilled a lifelong dream with her husband, traveling around the world. She and George ventured to Hawaii, Alaska, New Mexico, and Greece, and spent many winters alongside friends in Florida. Her laugh was uplifting and put a smile on the faces of everyone around her; her sense of humor, even in her last days, never faltered. Her grandchildren remember her signature advice: “Have some fun while you’re still young.”