Calling Hours, Funeral Set for UMass Amherst Student

AMHERST, Mass. - Calling hours and funeral arrangements have been set for University of Massachusetts student Deidre Ann DiDio, of Methuen, who died as a result of injuries suffered in a car crash on Route 2 in Athol Oct. 3 along with three friends. A first-year student, she was 17 and lived in Pierpont residence hall on campus.

Calling hours will be Mon., Oct. 5, from 7-9 p.m. and Tues., Oct. 6, from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. at Cataudella Funeral Home, 126 Pleasant Valley Street, Methuen. A funeral mass will be at St. Monica’s Church, Methuen, Wed., Oct. 7 at 11 a.m.

Jo-Anne Vanin, UMass associate vice chancellor for student affairs and dean of students, said a memorial service will be held on campus at a date to be announced.

Vanin extended the University’s sympathy to the DiDio family and friends. "The accident was a tragedy," she said, "an entire community is in mourning. We need to reach out to the people of Methuen and to each other as we try to come to terms with this incomprehensible loss."

She was born in Lawrence, Mass., and graduated from Methuen High School, where she was an honor roll student, and a varsity cheerleader for four years. She volunteered as a Pop Warner cheerleading coach, at the Bread and Roses Soup Kitchen, the Life Olympics for the Elderly, the AIDS Danceathon, and in the local Walk for Hunger and Walk for Cancer.

She also worked with children at the Growing Years Developmental and Educational Learning Center. She is the daughter of Richard and Barbara DiDio, of Methuen. Besides her parents, she leaves her brother Matthew and paternal grandparents Charles and Evelyn DiDio, all of Methuen. She is the granddaughter of the late Richard and Marilyn Bradley, formerly of Salem, N.H. She leaves numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends.

Memorial contributions may be made in lieu of flowers to the Deidre DiDio Scholarship Fund, Andover Savings Bank, 91 Pleasant Valley Street, Methuen, Mass. 01844.