Lucy Amat was bigger than life. she gave love and received love in huge measure. She was a beautiful singer, performer and had the heart of an adventurer.
She was born ahead of her time in New Bedford, MA on June 21, 1924 to Laurianna (Simmons/Arruda) and Umberto D’Angelos.
From a young age she enjoyed excitement, such as when her divorced parents lived in Providence and Long Island and would snatch her and her brother Frankie from one city and drive to the other, back and forth. Lucy thought it was super fun!
She always sang, had a voice like sweet caramel, and had dreams of being a singer in New York. Her opportunity to sing on the variety show “Camel Caravan” was quashed by her Father because New York was “dangerous” for a young woman, and show business was “corrupting”.
Lucy was a brilliant roller skater, and again she nurtured her adventurous spirit by playing in the Roller Derby until her Mother made her quit because it was considered (again!) too “dangerous."
But her sense of adventure and fearlessness was only matched by her patriotism. She waited until she was old enough to follow her brother Frankie into the service by being a grease monkey back home, and as soon as she was old enough she joined the newly formed Women’s Army Corps where she was part of the largest group of WAC rookies to leave New England. Lucy was an MP, guarding both the base, and Italian and German prisoners at the Boston Port of Embarkation earning the WAC Service, American Campaign, and the WWII Victory Medals. When the war ended, she joined the Army Reserves, until she married and had her first child Priscilla. She continued exploring by becoming a hairdresser, attending Airline School (where she was part of a vocal quartet, of course) and worked at General Electric.
Eventually she divorced, remarried and had the rest of her children, always continuing working, lastly at National Chain, retiring in 1984.
Around 53 she became a single working Mom and it was at that time a friend introduced her to the American Legion. It changed her life to be able to be back in service. She was a lifetime member beginning over 35 years ago.
She had multiple adventures with her fellow servicewomen, attending conferences and finding an amazing community. She was elected Historian and Chaplain for American Legion Post 15 in East Greenwich 29 years ago, and she presided over almost 80 funerals and participated in multiple parades, eventually giving the prayers at these events.
One of Lucy’s highest honors and most incredible life experiences was to be on the very first Rhode Island Honor flight, where she was the only female veteran. Second only to that was her visit to the National Women’s Memorial where she was presented with a personal portfolio of her full Military Record. In 2017 she was honored as the Grand Marshal for the East Greenwich Veterans Day Parade, where she was side-by-side with Governor Gina Raimondo on the viewing stand. She has had many other proclamations and honors, but most importantly loved her work in Veterans advocacy, education in schools, and special events at her Legion Post 15 for the Bristol Home Veterans Home.
Through all of this, though, she was first and foremost a singer, and through the Legion she became The Karaoke Queen! She was resistant to singing again at first, but then once she started, it became the central focus to her life. When Lucy restarted her pipes, it was magic. Even as she got older, her power to entertain and perform never waned. Her Karaoke family has grown and grown, and their love for her is only matched by her love for them. Before COVID isolation hit, Lucy could be found at her favorite Karaoke places such as Legion Post 15, The Elks in Coventry, Mr. Biggs, and The Joint, usually singing anywhere from 3-5 nights a week. She had more energy than most people half her age, or maybe even younger. Karaoke, dancing and socializing was her life force, and she sang it out!
It was in her nature to gather people up and get them living!
But her first pride were her children, through good and bad she protected them, without judgement, supported them, and was always there to share their joys and accomplishments, to listen and above all else, to love.
Whether it was through her family, her Legion work, or her Karaoke life, Lucy inspired so many people, gave so much love, and had incredible wisdom to give. She had so much more to do, and up until her death, fought to stay alive for the next adventure! Well, she IS on her next adventure, and we hope there is Karaoke in Heaven. Knowing her, if it’s not, she’ll create it, she’ll get everyone up and dancing!
She leaves behind her children, Priscilla Fortin McCarthy, Laurie Amat, Jeffrey Amat (Deborah), William Amat (Donna), Daniel Amat, and was predeceased by twins Robert and Richard Amat.
Predeceased by her brother Francisco D’Angelos, and survived by her nephew Stephen D’Angelos (Olivia), eleven grandchildren, including her best pal and confidante Pamela Gulotti, and two great grandchildren.
She also leaves loving friends, “Daughters” Diane Bruckschen Gardner, Kathy Miller, Carol Belmore, Kathleen , Carmen Nobile and “Son” Bob “Big-Bopper” Barra, and Jim Mitchell, Leo Bannister, Mary and Richard Filion, Skip Davis, Billy and Barry, and all her loved ones at Legion Post 15, and her Karaoke community, without whom she would not have lived such a wonderful life. We will be forever grateful.
A visitation will be held on Tuesday, August 18, 2020, from 4:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. at Olson & Parent Funeral Home (417 Plainfield Street, Providence, RI). In accordance with public health directives, face masks, seating capacity limits and social distancing guidelines will be honored.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, Lucy's burial on Wednesday, August 19, at the Rhode Island Veterans' Memorial Cemetery with full military honors will be private.
In lieu of flowers please consider donating to:
The American Legion Children and Youth Foundation
RIFC Honor Flight Hub
The Women In Military Service For America Memorial