SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) –Tributes have been pouring in to the family of the late Antonette Pepe. The five-term Springfield School Committee member and onetime mayoral candidate died Monday following a short illness at the age of 74.
Her husband of 53 years, Russell Pepe, told 22News that people have been calling him since Monday to express thanks for all that she did for individuals and for the city. As well as being a political leader, Pepe was the longtime president of the union representing school paraprofessionals, and was a neighborhood activist; creating sporting teams for young people in the city.
“She was a very warm person, she spoke her mind. Those kids- we’re getting phone calls left and right- she was like a mother to them,” Russell Pepe said.
In addition to her husband, Pepe leaves behind three children and seven grandchildren. Calling hours for Antonette Pepe will be on Friday afternoon from 4:00 to 8:00 P.M. at the Forastiere Smith Funeral Home in East Longmeadow. A Liturgy of Christian Burial will be held at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Springfield on Saturday morning at 10:00.