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Marie Attilia (Tozzi) Nelson

Died: Wed., Nov. 4, 2020


Funeral Service


Visitation

2:00 PM to 5:00 PM, Mon., Dec. 28, 2020
Location: Dahlborg-MacNevin Funeral Home (Lakeville)


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Music by The Piano Brothers


Marie A. Nelson (né Tozzi), 83, of Middleboro, passed away on November 4, at her home in Middleboro, after a short and courageous battle with cancer.

She was born in Quincy on April 16, 1937 to the late Louis and Olga Tozzi. Following studies at the Woodard School, she earned the Bachelor of Music degree from Boston University. She then taught in Nanuet, NY, and Bremerhaven, Germany, before returning to BU to complete a Master of Music degree. It was at BU where she met Richard Nelson, her husband of 45 years. Marie taught piano at home, and was a driving force as a faculty member in the Music Department at UMASS Dartmouth. She was a notable presence in the music education community of Southeastern Massachusetts, placing graduates in area schools. While at UMASS, she organized a group of Engineering students who traveled to Jamasi (Ghana) and built an eco-sustainable primary school for the local children. After retiring from UMASS, she was instrumental in the design of the Master of Music Program at The Longy School of Music at Bard College. That program drew inspiration from El Sistema, and was a reflection of Marie’s desire to enact social justice through music. Launched in the fall of 2020, the program reaches out to underserved children. In addition to music, Marie’s passions included volunteering, charity work, travel, knitting, and keeping up with her grandchildren’s activities.

She was the mother of Jon, his wife Robyn, and grandmother of Jon-Marcos and Diego, all of Amherst, N.Y.; mother of Kristina (Nelson) Jennings, her husband Steve, and grandmother of Matthew and Meghan, all of Nashville, TN; brother of Louis Tozzi, his wife Paulette, of Marshfield, their daughter Amanda Dinitz, her husband Adam, and their son Zachary, all of Houston, TX and cousins Doreen Giordani, her son Michael, Paul Berrini and Lana Harries.

The family will receive friends at Dahlborg-MacNevin Funeral Home, at 280 Bedford St. (Rte. 18), Lakeville on Monday, December 28, 2020 from  2-5 PM.   

Further details will be published as the date approaches.    

At the family’s request, in lieu of flowers, memorial gifts in Marie’s memory may be given to Old Colony Hospice at 321 Manley Street, West Bridgewater, MA 02379.

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Condolence Booklet

John Laughton
   Posted Sun November 08, 2020
Marie believed that music could make a difference in the world, and she was a living example of that belief. She had a passion for education and worked tirelessly to communicate that passion to her students and colleagues. It was an honor to have worked with her as her dean, her department chair, and her colleague. My sympathy goes to her family and close friends. She will be missed but her memory will live on.

Susan (de Koning) Sobolewski
   Posted Mon November 09, 2020
Jon & Kristina & families: I’m so very sorry for the loss of your mom. She loved you all deeply. She was generous and kind and a dear friend to my mother right until the very end. I remember her fondly from my years in Sunday School and participating in the BEST Christmas pageants ever. May your fondest memories provide comfort and carry you through these sad times. Xo Sue

Susan (de Koning) Sobolewski
   Posted Mon November 09, 2020
Jon & Kristina & families: I’m so very sorry for the loss of your mom. She loved you all deeply. She was generous and kind and a dear friend to my mother right until the very end. I remember her fondly from my years in Sunday School and participating in the BEST Christmas pageants ever. May your fondest memories provide comfort and carry you through these sad times. Xo Sue

Kathy & Buckie Zanardelli
   Posted Wed November 11, 2020
We were so saddened to hear of Marie's passing. She will be remembered for her graciousness, her love and sharing of music, her gentle ways, love of family and her accomplishments with crafting and in the kitchen. Rest in peace Marie.

Laurie and Bill Caron
   Posted Thu November 12, 2020
Our deepest sympathy, thinking of all of you. Laurie and Bill Caron

Alison Victoria Sullivan
   Posted Sat November 14, 2020
Jon, Kristina and families: My sincere condolences on the passing of your beautiful mother. She was a gracious, talented, and generous lady who brought a lot of beauty to the lives of others. She will be missed always.

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