Caliguiri's Widow Is There for O'Connor's

By Conte, Andrew | Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 3, 2006 | Go to article overview

Caliguiri's Widow Is There for O'Connor's


Conte, Andrew, Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Tribune-Review


Knowing there's little anyone could say to ease the pain, Jeanne Caliguiri did Saturday what any Pittsburgher would do for a grieving neighbor - she baked.

With friend Myrna Blank, the city's one-time first lady made mandel brot, a Jewish form of biscotti, to take to late Mayor Bob O'Connor's wife, Judy, and her family.

"That's all we can all do, is let them know we're here and we care," Caliguiri said.

The widow of Mayor Richard Caliguiri, who died in office 18 years ago, has offered Judy O'Connor friendship and a perspective that no one else can.

Yesterday, she called her again and planned to take her family the bread and some matzo ball soup.

"I feel bad for Judy," Caliguiri said, sitting in the dining room of her Shadyside townhouse. "You can't grieve in private."

During the past two months, as O'Connor fought his battle with brain cancer, the two women met almost weekly at a Starbucks near UPMC Shadyside, where the mayor died Friday.

They started getting to know each other when O'Connor took office in January and Caliguiri offered her advice on being a mayor's wife. They really bonded in recent weeks, she said - just stopping to talk "about anything and everything."

After city paramedics came up with the idea of making black-and- gold bracelets with O'Connor's name on them, the mayor's family turned to Caliguiri for help selling them to raise money for cancer research. …

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