GUILDERLAND – Lucy Amorosi is many things: a great cook, an avid gardener, a baseball fan, and Monday she becomes a centenarian when she celebrates her 100th birthday.
Amorosi credits her long and happy life to “working like a horse.”
She was born Jan. 30, 1923 and grew up in Watervliet. Her family ran Torosian Bakery in the town. Amorosi said she remembers her father, David Torosian (who customers referred to as Bake), delivering bread via horse and buggy.
The family lived by what is now Rosewood Plaza off of Route 155 in Watervliet. When Amorosi was growing up it was all farmland. When she was 12 her mother got ill, and she did the cooking, cleaning, washing and ironing, she said.
“My father said, ‘Lou, you gotta help me,’” Amorosi said. “And I said to my father, ‘I don’t know anything about the bakery.’ He said, ‘I will teach you.’ My brothers, they didn’t want anything to do indoors, and so I helped my father, and I learned the bakery.”
While working in the family’s bakery growing up, she also helped out gardening on the farm and helped a neighbor pick vegetables.
“The boys [her brothers] were slow, they didn’t want to work,” Amorosi said. “But I helped Mrs. Kranski with her peppers, beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, you name it. Whatever she grew I was always there. She paid me, but I told her I was getting tired of this. I said I was getting too old [she was 18 at the time]. To make a long story short, I helped them.”
Amorosi got a job working as a secretary at the Watervliet Arsenal for five years, and then at General Electric. She went on to work as a typist at Schalmont Central School District for 20 years.
Amorosi married her husband, Joseph Amorosi, in June 1956. The couple was married for 64 years when he died at 93 in 2020. The couple moved to Florida for about 14 years, but moved back to New York in large part to spend more time with their two grandsons, Joseph and Christopher.
“Every year when it was time my phone would ring, ‘Grandma, are you gonna come to our baseball game?’ and I’d say yes we’re coming. My husband said ‘pack up, we’re going home.’”
Lucy and Joseph Amorosi spent a lot of time traveling to different states to watch their grandson’s baseball games. She is now the proud great grandmother of two.
Lucy Amorosi’s son Chris and daughter-in-law Jane said Lucy is an “incredible” cook. Lucy, who is is of Armenian descent, cooks a number of her favorite Armenian dishes like dolma (vegetables stuffed with meats and rice), choreg (a woven bread served at Easter), baklava, fried zucchini and eggplant parmesan.
They said a lot of what Lucy cooks she makes to give to friends and family.
Amorosi had an extensive garden she tended and tilled by hand herself, growing numerous different plants and vegetables. She said finely crushed egg shells and fish heads make the best fertilizer.
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