September 10, 1954 ~ April 1, 2021

Born in: Brooklyn, NY
Resided in: Rocky Point, NY

Geraldine Anne Thalen (Gerry) of Rocky Point, N.Y. passed peacefully on April 1, 2021. She was the beloved wife of the late Albert Thalen, loving mother of Julia Giani and her husband Joseph and Katie Agoglia and her husband Sam, and cherished grandmother of Joseph O. Giani. Gerry was the dear sister of Roger Podd, Richard Podd, Kevin Podd, Patrice Garrison, Juliana Podd, and Janis Chamberlain.

A devoted mother, sister, friend, and educator, Gerry will forever be remembered for her strength, wisdom, humility, compassion, and wit, along with her ability to perfectly capture a moment with a quote or line from classic literature. Gerry dedicated her life to her two daughters and to enriching the lives of her students at Mount Sinai High School and Suffolk County Community College. She cared tirelessly and selflessly for her family and found the greatest pleasure in seeing her daughters happy.

Gerry will be loved forever by her daughters, Julia and Katie, her brothers and sisters, and her many dear friends. She was predeceased by her parents, Harold and Frances Podd.

As a high school English teacher and professor of English and Literature, Gerry was passionate about great writing and about educating others. She especially loved the works of Shakespeare, Kurt Vonnegut, and Ralph Waldo Emerson. In Gerry’s honor, please take a moment to enjoy these words from two of her favorite authors, and if you feel so inclined, pick up a book and immerse yourself in some great literature for her.

This above all: to thine own self be true.
William Shakespeare, Hamlet

A purpose of human life, no matter who is controlling it, is to love whoever is around to be loved.
Kurt Vonnegut, The Sirens of Titan


Gerry’s family has established an annual scholarship for Mount Sinai High School students. If you would like to make a donation in lieu of flowers to the Geraldine Thalen Memorial Trust, you may do so using the information below:

Make check payable to: National Philanthropic Trust
Include on check memo: Geraldine Thalen Memorial Trust / 115986
Checks may be brought to the services at Branch Funeral Home, or mailed to:

National Philanthropic Trust
165 Township Line Road, Suite 1200
Jenkintown, PA 19046


Katie Agoglia
27 Beech Road
Rocky Point, NY 11778


Visitation: April 11, 2021 2:00 - 5:00 pm

Branch Funeral Home of Miller Place
551 Route 25A

Second Visitation: April 11, 2021 7:00 - 9:00 pm

Branch Funeral Home of Miller Place
551 Route 25A

Service: April 12, 2021 10:30 am

Branch Funeral Home of Miller Place
551 Route 25A


Calverton National Cemetery
210 Princeton Blvd.

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  1. candleMy deepest sympathies to Katie and Julia. I have so many wonderful memories of your mom throughout the years. Whether it was through the PTA, Girl Scouts, Board of Education, taking her classes at SCCC, or camping at Hither Hills, your mother was a very special, loving, passionate. She will be truly missed.

  2. I’m so sorry to read this. I have so many great memories of Gerry from our college adventures. Sending prayers your way

  3. To an AMAZING teacher and friend! she always believed in me and made me look forward to class. Rest In Peace.

  4. Our prayers for your family during this challenging time. Your mom was a kind and gentle woman who always had only positive light around her. We wish her peace in heaven with Aunt Frances and Uncle Harold.

  5. candleStill processing this sad and painful news. I have such wonderful and vivid memories of my childhood with your family. I hope you take comfort in the knowledge she knew she was so loved and respected, humbled by it I’m sure. I feel blessed to have received her love, support and respect as a grown woman, not just as the little cousin she often had to look after during those summer months spent at her parents house. She will forever be in my heart. Much love and prayers of strength and peace for her beautiful family 🙏❤️

  6. candleI’m sorry to read about the passing of Mrs. Thalen. I first met her in 1996 in my first year at NYIT as she was my professor for my English class. I had her again for another class at NYIT in 1999, where I remember tutoring another student in that class. Mrs. Thalen revealed to me that we lived in the same town when I wrote a paper about my job experiences at CVS in Rocky Point. About 5 years later, I purchased my first house only a block west of her residence so we were neighbors. I know she contributed a great deal to the schools in Rocky Point and I forever value my time in her classes in college.

  7. candleTo Julia And Katie and to all of Gerry’s
    Siblings my cousins , I am so saddened by this news , sending love and prayers to all . Wish all of us would spend more time together. Thankful for the childhood memories. Peace and love to all and may we have comfort by having faith in heaven above .

  8. Julia and family, I am so sorry for the lost of you mother, grandmother and friend. I had the honor of meeting her one time and was looking forward to getting to know her better since Julia you are one of my dearest friends. Julia please know I am here whenever you need me. My she Rest in Peace.

  9. I will always be grateful for Gerry’s generosity and warmth to my family. Gerry embraced my daughter Susana and me and always included and welcomed us into her heart and home. I will miss her kindness, creativity, and thoughtfulness. I am happy that she was bathed in the love and devotion of her children, her grandchild, and her family during her long struggle. My heart goes out to Julia and Katie and to her entire family.

  10. My thoughts and prayers to Julia and Katie, as well as the rest of the family.
    It was an honor to know her and spend multiple holidays with her. She always wanted to make sure I was comfortable and not left out. She had a beautiful soul.
    Sending love and strength.

  11. Attending your wake and viewing the photos of happier times has brought some peace but pulls at the strings of sadness. To my treasured friend, you will be missed everyday. You are one of the smartest, witty and loyal friends a person could have. You have left a wonderful legacy in Julia and Katie.

  12. So very sorry. I met Gerry at Suffolk Community and then again at SUNY Oswego. Lucky me!
    Smart, tough, pretty, and yes, a beautiful soft side. I will miss her.
    My condolences to Julia, Katie and her entire family.

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