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Rossana Del Vecchio was a great woman, mother, scientist and friend. She loved life and her children immensely and fought bravely to be with them as much as life allowed her to.
Rossana was born in Taranto, Italy on September 7th, 1969. She grew up in Taranto together with her two sisters and a brother, and had a lot of good and caring family members and friends. Rossana graduated from Pisa University in 1994 with a Bachelor degree in Oceanography. She then moved over to the U.S. and in 2002 graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park with a Doctoral degree in Environmental Chemistry.
It was at the University of Maryland that Rossana fell in love with Neil, who later became her husband, and decided to settle down in the U.S. Rossana and Neil shared their love for the ocean, science and the outdoors. Together they had two lovely children, Vincent and Giulia. From the beginning, the family chose Greenbelt as their home. Rossana was a protecting, loving and fun mom. Her children and family were her top priority, her own needs always came later. She was very involved in her children’s school and in Greenbelt community life, and quickly made lifelong friends with whom she intertwined her daily life. Rossana loved the Greenbelt community as well as Italy and her native heritage, and traveled back to Taranto regularly. When she arrived in Maryland, she connected with Italians in the area who became lifelong friends. She also later connected with the broader Italian community with the DIVE association, and in 2018 became a steering committee member. Rossana loved her research, working in the laboratory and at sea. She had many students and friends at the University of Maryland and enjoyed working at NASA and was looking forward to contributing to their research initiatives.
Rossana passed away on July 4th 2019 taken by a quickly spreading illness, but she will always stay in the hearts of those whose lives she touched with her love.
** The family of Rossana strongly encourages donations to the American Cancer Society as a show of sympathy **
American Cancer Society
P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City OK 73123