January 16, 1957 - September 8, 2016
Westfield, New Jersey | Age 59
Amazing Mother, Wife, Aunt, Musician, Teacher and Wonderfully Caring Person
Debra Parente-Rosin, 59, of Westfield, NJ passed away on Thursday, September 8th, 2016. She was a loving Mother, Wife, Aunt and Musician who was very active in the arts. Debra was born and raised in North Arlington, NJ. She received her Bachelor in Music Education from Montclair State University and her Master's in Arts and Liberal Studies from Kean University. Growing up she played piano as a soloist and accompanist for various performances and musical groups. Debra became a teacher and Department Head of the Passaic Collegiate Schools developing the curriculum and musical lesson plans. She sang in choirs and in leading roles on stage. Debra was an English and Music Professor, teaching piano for over forty years. She was a long-time member of the Music Educator's Association (MEA) and the Westfield Musical Club. Being a long-time Westfield resident, Debra performed as a pianist, singer and accompanist for several community and school shows including Roosevelt Intermediate School's 2004 Production of "Big". She conducted her own Musical Theater Workshop called, "Broadway Bound" at School One in Scotch Plains. Debra also taught voice and sang as a solo vocalist for the Westfield Presbyterian Church Choir. She worked for the NJ Workshop for the Arts, Stars of Tomorrow Performing Arts Camp, and the New Jersey Festival Orchestra (NJFO) She was an interim organist and music director for the Westfield Presbyterian Church and was the Music/Choir Director of the First Baptist Church of Westfield. During her Master's program she received First Place for her 2003 research essay and won the MEA's Distinguished Teacher Award three years in a row (1995, 1996, and 1997). For the past 30 years, Debra held an annual piano recital for students who attended her private music studio, where she taught piano, voice, and music theory. She is survived by her husband Christopher, her twin sons Michael and Justin and her brother Thomas.
The Service of Remembrance for her will be 10:30am on Saturday, September 17th at the First Baptist Church of Westfield - 170 Elm St. Westfield. Private interment will be in Fairview Cemetery.
Debra's visitation hours Friday, September 16th from 4pm-8pm at Gray Funeral Home - 318 E Broad St. Westfield, NJ 07090. In lieu of flowers we ask that you kindly make donations to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP). To view a life tribute, please go to www.grayfuneralhomes.com.