Carolyn Joy Messina, recently of Mashpee, died December 17 after a five-year battle with cancer. Ms. Messina, a singer-songwriter, was 49.

She was the daughter of Dominic S. Messina and Valerie L. (Auriemma) Messina of the Southport community.

At the age of 4, Ms. Messina began playing the piano. She subsequently taught herself guitar at 10, wrote poems at 12, and started writing music at 13.

She furthered her education at William Paterson College in Wayne, New Jersey, graduating in 1994 with a degree in communications. She then worked for various broadcast public relations firms, including DWJ Television in Ridgewood, New Jersey. She received several industry awards for music created for a Habitat for Humanity “Women Raise the Roof” documentary (1998) as well as a special film for Christie’s Auction House (1996) on the Mauerbach Sale, a collection of items originally seized by the Nazis that were being sold for the benefit of victims of the Holocaust.

For the past 30 years, Ms. Messina was actively involved in the music ministry at her church: singing in the choir, as well as playing piano, guitar and bass in its Contemporary Christian ensemble, with the Archdiocese of Newark Youth and Young Adult Ministry. She performed music at Essex County’s Theology on Tap and was the opening act for keynote speaker Tony Melendez at Youthfest 2010. She held a certificate in youth ministry at Immaculate Conception Seminary School at Seton Hall University.

Ms. Messina performed at clubs such as The Bitter End in New York City and The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, coffeehouses in New York and New Jersey, and at numerous area restaurants.

Her music was best described in the industry as acoustic folk/pop/rock. In 2009 she recorded and produced her first album of original music, “Carolyn J. Messina–Singer/Songwriter.” Her song lyrics addressed life, love, loss and more and came from personal experiences.

In addition to her parents, she leaves her older brother, James Messina and his family, of Rockaway, New Jersey; and extended family.

Services and interment will take place in New Jersey.

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