A beautiful wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother and friend. She will be forever in our hearts.
  • 98 years old
  • Born on June 6, 1918 in Providence, Rhode Island, United States.
  • Passed away on April 24, 2017 in Thousand Oaks, California, United States.

Clementina “Clara” Mosca Zinno, daughter of Maria Callei and Angelo Mosca, Sr. was born June 6, 1918 and passed away peacefully on April 24th at the home of her daughter, surrounded by her son, daughter and loving family. 

Clara was predeceased by her devoted husband, Joseph Zinno with whom she shared her life and love for 70 years.  She is survived by her children: Janice Allen of Thousand Oaks, California and Richard Zinno of Fort Worth, Texas, their spouses Richard and Mary Ann, her grandchildren: Jessica Leatherman, Jeremy Zinno, Jennifer Arnett and Marcella Rolwes; and 10 great grandchildren.  She was also a loving grandmother to Kimberley Callei Allen.  Clara was the eldest sister to four siblings, all deceased: Domenic, Palma, and Angelo Jr., Mosca; and Giovanna Mosca Cafasso. 

Clara and Joe’s life together was an adventure that took them from coast to coast and around the world.  They made a home in four states, Florida, Rhode Island, California and Texas, and created lasting friendships wherever they traveled.  Their marriage was filled with change, new horizons, and boundless joy.

Throughout their lives they worked tirelessly to keep their family bonded, and their traditions strong.  In stark contrast to the norms of their generation, they bravely set out to follow their children and test life and climates beyond their comfort zones.  They made life for their kids and grandkids very special by their willingness to go to them, rather than asking everyone to come “home” to them.  Yet, everyone in the family has fond memories of the house on Windmill Street, Grandpa’s boat, and Grandma’s kitchen. 

In their travels they learned new things, made new friends, and carried their love of family with them to share with every new person they met.

Clara, our mother, greatest cheerleader and shoulder to lean on was an indominatable force.  She encouraged us to do our best, was never happy with mediocrity, and was ever so proud of our achievements.  She could fight like a tiger if one of her children or grandchildren was hurt, all the while maintaining her serene demeanor.

Clara’s family and extended family filled her life, and brought her great joy.  She was a homemaker par excellence, skilled pastry chef, expert tailor.  She outfitted her sisters in Vogue suits, when she was just a young woman herself.  Every special occasion required her special talent to design and sew beautiful clothes for herself and her daughter.  Every birthday required a very special cake of her design, and blueberry picking season meant hours of stemming, blanching and baking the flakiest of pies.

She loved her nephews, nieces, and godchildren as she did her own children.  Each one (and there were MANY) held a special place in her heart.  She loved opening her home to have it filled with children; and somehow, as if casting a spell, managed to induce them to be polite “as a gentleman”, and to sit up straight “like a lady”.

She volunteered at schools, hosted charity events, and entertained family and friends in her home.  To her husband’s business, she was chief financial officer, and executive assistant.  She and Joe would make midnight “runs” to deliver his work to his dentist clients before their morning patients.  They’d drink a cup of tea or hot chocolate and head to bed, content that the day had been a “good day”.

Clara was a true friend to so many, holding her friends close for almost a century!  She was admired for her perfectionism, her warmth, and her tireless spirit.  She judged no one harshly, and forgave those who might have hurt her.  She took great pleasure in the company of good friends.

To those who knew her when she was young, she was the embodiment of versatility: athletic, refined, hardworking, and quietly adventuresome.   In a time when maiden women didn’t travel, she traveled to the World’s Fair in New York, drove to Cape Cod with her friends, and visited the White Mountains of New Hampshire to enjoy the Fall colors.  She loved diving into the waves of the cold Atlantic, skating on frozen ponds, enjoying the competition of the tennis court, and riding horses through the nearby woods.  As a young mother, she taught her children to love the outdoors, bundling them in snow suits that looked like space suits, and sledding down icy slopes on sleds and toboggans, or water skiing on Narragansett Bay. 

Most friends and acquaintances remember her as the consummate hostess; whether the occasion was a formal dinner, spontaneous tea, or a backyard party.  Of course, the preparations and cooking were always her own.  Even “casual” gatherings were executed with her own special style and warmth, which she employed to embrace her quests.  One always felt special, in Clara’s home.

Wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, friend, a “lady” always, Clara will be remembered for her beauty, grace, and quiet strength.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests the consideration of a donation to the following charities:

Mary Health of the Sick
2929 Theresa Dr.
Newbury Park, CA 91320

Attn: Kathy Tamashiro

Development Office

Please include “in memory of Clara Zinno” 


HOPE Worldwide (as a special thanks to hospice nurse Jennifer Casano)

4231 Balboa Ave #330 | San Diego, CA 92117                           Attn:
Brooke Morita | Development Officer
Friends and family that would like to support the Medical Brigades can go to hopeww.org/donatecsb and check the "This gift is in honor, memory, or support of someone" box.  Checks made payable to HOPE worldwide can be mailed to the San Diego address with a note or comment in the check memo explaining the memorial gift.
Posted by L M on 30th May 2017
My deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Clara mosca zinno. The death of a loved one can cause a deep sense of loss. God gives hope to see the ones who has fallen asleep in death again. Acts 24:15 says " And I have hope towards god,which hope these men also looked forward to ,that there is going to be a resurrection of both the righteous and the unrighteous ". At that time he will swallow up death forever (Isiah 25:8). May you all continue to hold the precious memories of your dearly beloved Clara close to your hearts and know that one day soon we will see the ones we loss in death again. How thrilled we all will be when gods promise become a reality. You can visit this website at www.jw.org there you will find many topics that explains "can the dead really live again?" You will find this information very informative.
Posted by P J on 16th May 2017
My sincere condolences to the family. Your loved one apparently lived life joyfully and really loved people. God has promised to bring about a time when we can see our loved ones again. At that time all mankind will enjoy perfect health and youthfulness on a paradise earth. Revelations 21:3,4. May you find comfort from the God of all comfort.
Posted by Camille Crawford on 8th May 2017
Clara will live in my heart forever! She and Joe, both, so enriched and blessed our lives when we moved in across the street from them in Camarillo, 30 years ago. From that time on, we had such a special friendship with them. Clara was the epitome of elegance, kindness, class, loveliness, grace, style, generosity, warmth and beauty. I treasured all my time with her and she made everyone she came into contact with, feel ever so special. I take comfort in having been able to visit with Clara prior to her joining her beloved Joe, and telling her that we loved her dearly. I will miss this dear, sweet, loving woman with all my heart! What an honor and privilege it was to have had her in our lives. She will live within us for all of time! "The tide recedes, but leaves behind bright seashells on the sand. The sun goes down, but gentle warmth still lingers on the land. The music stops, and yet it echoes on in sweet refrains... For every joy that passes, something beautiful remains." Author unknown In loving memory of Clara, John and Camille Crawford
Posted by Irene O'Donoghue on 3rd May 2017
Dear Janice and Richard, I have such wonderful memories of your mom and dad and our family visits on Charles Street and then Windmill Street, during which we inevitably found ourselves sitting around the table enjoying homemade dishes and listening to stories told of my parents and yours growing up in the neighborhood. It was always a celebration when we got together. Your mom was a beautiful lady and although we were miles away, she was always close at heart. Jack and I are so sorry for your loss and we will keep you and your family in our prayers during this sad time. Love, Patina Irene
Posted by Sue Machado on 2nd May 2017
I remember when Auntie Clara and Uncle Pipi lived in R.I., my family would frequently visit on Saturday mornings and immediately be greeted by Auntie Clara with a delicious breakfast and coffee. When Auntie Clara and Uncle Pipi visited R.I. for family events, they would always stay with Lil and Pete. It was always a pleasure to see them. One summer visit trip to R.I., Rick and I took Uncle Norman, Uncle Pipi, and Auntie Clara to George's for clam cakes and chowder. On the way down to the beach there was a great amount of reminiscing, memory exchanges and a great deal of love and laughing. On the return home, Rick and I turned to the back seat to find the three of them fast asleep with their heads on each others shoulders. We laughed at how cute they were together. I was honored to have Auntie Clara and Rich and Jan attend Ryan and Lauren's wedding in July 2016 in R.I. The amount of happiness Auntie Clara brought to my family and to so many people is endless. Our hearts are heavy and still ache with sadness but knowing that she has been united with her true love is so comforting. Auntie Clara may be gone from our sight, but she will remain in our hearts forever.
Posted by Lucy Saturnino on 1st May 2017
It was a pleasure working and sharing with her and Joe at the Italian Catholic Federation. She was truly a Lady in all the sense of the word. May she rest in peace
Posted by Sherry Mullin on 1st May 2017
Jan and family, It's hard to lose someone as precious as Clara. She was so kind and sweet. Pat and I feel so blessed to have known her. Our love to all of your family.
Posted by Kathie Nannicelli on 29th April 2017
Jan, I can still see your mom visiting us at the dorm to drop off goodies and her latest sewing creations for you! Such a lovely, talented, and sweet lady. We are all better for having known her. She definitely left this world a better, more beautiful place! Jay and I send our love and prayers to you, Rich and all your family.
Posted by Dan Ricci on 28th April 2017
Deepest condolences to Janice and Richard and families. My parents (Diamond and Catherine Ricci) always stated that no one could have better friends and neighbors than Clara and Joe Zinno. And I believe that to be true. I also believe that Clara and Joe are again together driving a beautiful RV in a place where they can look out over the horizon and see vistas of unbelievable beauty. Dan and Joan Ricci
Posted by Hank Watters on 28th April 2017
Haiku: Such a radiance Is never accidental Luminous Clara
Posted by Hank Watters on 28th April 2017
I was in college with Dick when I first met "Mama." I walked into her kitchen and was intoxicated by the aroma of her cooking. Then I was introduced to her and the first thing that struck me was the light in her eyes. She accepted me with open arms, not just then but every time I saw her. The last time was in October. I thought of her as an angel the first time we met and I am sure that while she has moved on, she is still very much the same glowing spirit that I met the very first time. And her radiance has not left us, just her physical manifestation. Bless you, Mama, for everything you mean to all of us. Thank you for the light you brought to all of us.
Posted by Nancy Otto on 28th April 2017
My deepest condolences to you and your family. She is fondly remembered by all who knew her I'm sure; she left an impression on me and I hardly knew her. Sending you hugs.
Posted by Connie D'Angelo on 27th April 2017
Janice, So sorry to hear about mom's passing. Frank and I had such wonderful times with your mom and dad. They were a great couple. All our sincere condolences. -Frank & Connie D'Angelo
Posted by Patricia A. Reynolds on 27th April 2017
Auntie, Your footprint ,on the hearts of many, will be felt for generations.
Posted by Sandra Nolette on 27th April 2017
Jan, I am very sorry to learn of your mom's passing. Although I had the privilege of her company on but a few occasions, she made a lasting impression-a true lady. You and she are in my prayers. Sincerely,Sandra Nolette
Posted by Muriel Savikas on 27th April 2017
Such a privilege to share life's journey with you, Clara. Fond memories of such a lovely lady. With love from Muriel and Victor

Leave a Tribute