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North End resident, 47, found dead on bench in Christopher Columbus Park in frigid temperatures

Melanie A. DiVasta.Croswell Funeral Home

The woman who was found dead on a park bench near her North End home in sub-freezing temperatures on Saturday was remembered Tuesday as a vibrant spirit who was devoted to her family and loved live music, often traveling to Nashville, Tenn. for concerts.

Melanie A. DiVasta, 47, was found unresponsive in a park bench in Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park around 3:30 a.m. Saturday, the coldest night in Boston in decades. According to the National Weather Service, the temperature in Boston early Saturday was 10 degrees below zero.

Her cause of death is under investigation by the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner.


A graduate of North Reading High School, DiVasta attended Boston University before deciding to find her future in the workplace, her family wrote in an obituary. She moved to the North End where she lived for many years, they wrote.

“The North End of Boston has been Melanie’s home since she left BU, much to the chagrin of her parents and friends who were often enlisted to help move in or out of her various apartments, none with elevators or parking,” her obituary reads. “Her love for the Clock Tower and the lights of Christopher Columbus Park are well documented in frequent Facebook selfies, moments in time that capture the beauty of her home, the radiance of her smile and, most of the time, a large Dunkin Iced.”

DiVasta, who was not married, was devoted to her pets and her numerous nieces and nephews.

“But perhaps more than anything, Melanie loved music — from the early days of NKOTB to more recent ‘meet and greets’ with Keith Urban — if Melanie wasn’t working, she was listening to music or planning to listen to live music somewhere,” her family wrote. “Her home-away-from home and perhaps the only place she would have considered leaving the North End for was Nashville, where she established herself as a regular fan of several local artists.”


A funeral Mass will be said for DiVasta on Saturday at 11:30 a.m. at St. Theresa’s Church in North Reading.

“In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made in her name to the Merrimack River Feline Rescue Society in Salisbury, MA; alternatively, Melanie would love it if you bought a ticket to that concert you weren’t sure of, because that’s what she would do,” her family wrote.

John R. Ellement can be reached at Follow him @JREbosglobe.