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Life Story / Obituary
When reflecting on the life of Rosemary Paniwozik, it is easy to see the deep love and devotion she had for her family. She was the sort of person who gave everything she did her all, and every choice she made was guided by her unwavering faith. Although she treasured her roles as a wife and mother, Rosemary just might have argued that nothing was better than becoming a grandmother. Although she will be deeply missed, she leaves behind a brilliantly colored mosaic of memories that her loved ones will forever cherish.
It was on June 18th that Rosemary Elaine was welcomed into the world by her parents, James and Maria (Perricone) Shingola. She was one of the middle of 12 children in her family, but sadly one of her siblings died as an infant. There were eight girls and three boys in all in the Shingola family. Rosemary was raised in the family home on Indiana Street, SW, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where her father worked for the railroad while her mother was a homemaker. As a student she attended St. James Elementary, and together with her family she was a member of St James Catholic Church as they were a big Italian Catholic family. The family often gathered for big meals, and Sunday dinner always found them hosting a lot of extras with food everywhere. Rosemary attended Union High School where she also played the violin.
Not to be forgotten during her years as a young woman was Rosemary’s introduction to the man who would change the course of her life forever. His name was Joe Paniwozik, and after dating for a couple of years they were married. Together they welcomed their daughter, Cindy, into their hearts and home in November of 1956. They made their home on Gratiot, NW. After 10 years the couple divorced and Rosemary went to work as the manager of the Ole Tacos downtown. When Cindy got out of school at St. James, she took the bus downtown to see Rosemary at work. Rosemary never drove as she was terrified at the thought, but she did fly to Chicago a few times. She did enjoy dancing, and during her younger years she taught classes at Arthur Murray for quite some time. Rosemary worked at the Amway Grand Plaza for several years, too. She kept her mother’s tradition of hosting big dinners every Sunday.
Once grandchildren arrived Rosemary couldn’t have been happier, and it has been said that her grandchildren were her whole world. She loved to spoil her grandsons in all kinds of ways including trips to the mall to buy cartfulls. When the ice cream truck came by Rosemary usually came back with one of everything, which of course always happened right before dinner. Together the boys and grandma would sit and lick their ice cream while the parents were fuming that the boys’ appetites would be ruined. Christmas was for spoiling the boys according to Rosemary, and there was always an overabundance of gifts. Each boy had huge piles, and she always made sure that everything was even. Later, she looked forward to her grandsons spoiling her by bringing her an olive burger from Mr. Burger.
New and exciting changes were in store for Rosemary when she met Bruce, and together they shared more than 37 years. Although they never married, they were engaged for all those years. They enjoyed traveling around Michigan together and taking trips to the casino. Bruce was also an amazing grandpa to her grandsons.
Throughout her life Rosemary was a woman of many interests. Fatih was a cornerstone in her life, and she was very active in her church. Rosemary loved Polish food and since she worked long shifts until 7 p.m. she liked to go out to eat. Carrabba’s and Salvatore’s were her favorite, but she hated cheese and never had it on anything. When it came to sweets, cannolis were her favorite. Rosemary liked music from Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, and big band music as well. She liked reading magazines and watching television, although she somehow managed to mess up the remote on a regular basis. Her grandsons were always eager and willing to come over to correct the issue and spend some time with her. On several occasions, her grandson, Casey, came over with a pizza in hand. He often stayed for a long time as they enjoyed just talking together.
In time, Rosemary needed more care and moved in with Cindy. After a few months, she needed memory care and was moved to American House-Cherrywood. Just this past Saturday she was so happy to see her grandsons, whom she affectionately called “my boys,” when they came for a visit.
Although she was short in stature, everyone knew Rosemary Paniwozik was the boss. She didn’t shy away from doing things her own way, and if it involved spoiling her grandsons she knew no bounds. When Rosemary loved, she loved with her whole heart, and she was happiest when surrounded by the family she adored. Life will never be the same without her here, but her family will proudly carry on her timeless legacy in her footsteps.
PANIWOZIK (SHINGOLA), Rosemary Elaine, died on September 15, 2021. She is survived by her daughter, Cindy Chambers; grandsons, Sean Stammis, Corey (Carrie) Stammis and Casey (Shilynn) Stammis; great-grandchildren, Michael, Ella, Leo, Kobe, Camden, Frankie and Knox; and many nieces and nephews. Rosemary was the most loving mother, grandmother and great-grandmother and her grandsons were her whole world. She worked for many years at The Amway Grand Plaza and Ole Tacos and loved her time as a dance instructor at Arthur Murray Studios. A special thank you to the staff at American House – Cherrywood for their care and compassion. A private family graveside service will take place at Rosedale Memorial Park. Contributions in her memory to Faith Hospice or Alzheimer’s Association – Greater Grand Rapids Chapter would be appreciated. Please visit www.heritagelifestory to read Rosemary’s life story, submit a memory, photo or to sign the guestbook.