Josephine “Jo” (Rudzis) Wazlowski, 92, formerly of Tewksbury, MA, died Dec. 25 at Hancock Hall in Danbury, CT. She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Frank Wazlowski.

Jo, affectionately known as “YoYo” to part of her family, was born in Boston on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 30, 1922, to the late George and Mary (Buianowska) Rudzis. She attended Girls’ High School in Boston, where she did so well that her teachers encouraged her to attend college. Alas, college was too expensive to be a consideration. When asked, for the high school’s yearbook, to say what her ambition in life was, she replied that she’d like to “have a house full of cats.”

Jo went on to hold several jobs, including bookkeeper, clerk, messenger, and packer. It was at one of those jobs where—many years ahead of her time—she informed her boss that, because she was doing the same work as the men around her, she deserved equal pay; she received that equal pay.

Most recently, Jo was employed by the Internal Revenue Service. She was a member of the National Federation of Retired Federal Employees. She was a communicant of St. Williams in Tewksbury for nearly 45 years.

Along with being a lifelong cat lover (although she never did have a house full of cats), Jo also loved plants and loved to garden. Moving to Tewksbury in 1965 meant that she and her husband were able to indulge their mutual love of gardening.

In those early days, it was rare for a year go by without some new part of their property being dug up for a new vegetable or flower garden or for new bushes, trees, and shrubs.

Although many people appreciated Jo for her love of cats and her interest in gardening, many more people knew her for her friendliness and her sense of humor. That sense of humor rarely failed to delight those she met. Many people will remember her as the outgoing woman with a twinkle in her eyes.

Jo is survived by a daughter and son-in-law, Karen and Jeff Gertner of New York; a son and daughter-in-law, Mike and Jo-Anne Wazlowski of North Carolina, a granddaughter and grandson-in-law, Amanda and Jon Young of New Jersey; a second granddaughter, Sophie Wazlowski; as well as a great-granddaughter, Eliana Young.

In addition to her parents and husband, Jo was predeceased by her siblings, Sophie, Henry, and Agnes Rudzis.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Wednesday, December 31, 2014 at 11 am at St. Joseph's Church in Danbury. Interment will be private; in accordance with Jo’s wishes, there will be no calling hours.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations in her memory be made to an animal rescue organization. Jowdy-Kane Funeral Home, Danbury is in charge of arrangements.

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