January 2, 1921 ~ May 5, 2007
Carolina Melillo, beloved wife, mother, nonna and friend, passed away peacefully on May 5, 2007 at Driftwood Health Care Center in Torrance within a month of her husband, Manlio. She was 86.
Carolina had an adventurous life living in three different countries. Carolina Luisa Tafuri, "Carla", was born on January 2, 1921, in Naples, Italy, the 4th of five children to Gaetano and Elvira Tafuri. Her love of children led to a career as an elementary school teacher and an expressive artist. Her charming beauty and spirited nature caught the eye and heart of Manlio Melillo, a graduate student at the University of Naples, and they later married. The couple had their first child, Anna, and moved to Montreal, Canada to take advantage of better opportunities following WWII in Europe. They had a second child, Carlo, but the severe winters were too much for these Napoletanos and the family moved to sunny Southern California. They bought a house in Inglewood, quickly learned English and adapted to the American dream. They had a third child, Mario, in California. Carla was blessed years later with her much adored grandchildren.
Carla flourished in the family life and later moved to Torrance, worked part time in the nutrition area and took classes to develop her talents in art and watercolor. She also was an avid medical researcher especially of holistic and natural remedies.
She is fondly remembered for her melting warmth, joyous nature, million dollar smile, singing, playing the piano and strong faith in God. Her infectious humor, delicious old world cooking and loving kindness were treasured by friends and family. Her generosity of spirit and selfless attitude inspired the best in everyone and she will be greatly missed by all in California, Canada and Italy. The family thanks all the caregivers at Driftwood Healthcare for their loving kindness to our sweet mother for over 2 years.
She is survived by her daughter Anna Melillo of San Rafael, son Emilio Carlo Melillo of Corona del Mar, son Mario Aldo Melillo of Torrance and grandchildren Max, Martine and Michael. Her husband, Manlio Melillo preceded her in death April 9, 2007.
She sings in our hearts forever.
The memorial service will be held on Tuesday, May 22, 2007 at 11 AM at Rice Chapel, Torrance, CA.
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