November 13, 1966 ~ August 10, 2022

Born in: Torrance, California
Resided in: Fremont, California

Mia’s sweet and gentle spirit was called back to her God after a sudden illness. She is reunited in Heaven with her father, Leo Leonelli MD (2011) and brother David Leonelli PhD (2013). Mia was unique and original, since childhood, and always had her own style. She was warm, creative, perceptive and loving. She brought harmony into any gathering or situation. Her ability to focus her caring attention on anyone, friend or stranger, made her a cherished wife, a fun and engaging sister, a devoted daughter, a beloved auntie, an exceptional teacher.

Mia is survived by her husband of 27 years, Brian McNamee; her mother, Ruth Leonelli of Seal Beach; her brothers Steve (Janet) of Cypress, Dan (Nella) of Rio Rancho, NM, and Mark (Elizabeth) of Chula Vista; sisters Laura (Mark Heitlinger) of Sacramento, Lisa (Mark Gallego) of Santa Maria, and Melinda (Steve Batty) of Gardena, as well as 20 nieces and nephews who were precious to her, and 27 treasured grand-nieces and nephews.

Mia was a gifted visual artist who was skilled and detail-oriented, which led to an early career in graphic design. She loved to create interesting fabrics and clothing through knitting. She appreciated literature and was an avid reader. Her later career in teaching allowed her to further express her creativity, to relate to young students in a personal and meaningful way, and to integrate her Christian faith and values into her profession.

Mia will be greatly missed by everyone who knew her, but especially by those who loved her and lost her too soon.


Lighthouse Memorials is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Memorial Service Mia McNamee
Time: Aug 27, 2022 10:00 AM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

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Meeting ID: 810 7880 3958
Passcode: 921974
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Service: August 27, 2022 10:00 am

Lighthouse Memorials & Receptions - McMillan Center
1016 W. 164th Street
Gardena, CA 90247


Reception / Repast: August 27, 2022 11:00 am - August 27, 2022 2:00 pm

Lighthouse Memorials & Receptions - McMillan Center
1016 W. 164th Street
Gardena, CA 90247


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  1. I worked with Mia for several years and she was always energetic, positive, and just a pleasure to be around. She will be missed.

  2. candle 3Mia taught me so much about life in the few short years I knew her. She was a teacher to many long before she changed her career to teach. Her energy and passion for life was inspiring. She will absolutely be missed.

  3. candle 1I worked with Mia for several years. Her smile! 😀 The sound of her unique (and boisterous!) belly laugh ringing through the air … her energy, positivity and creativity are memories I will hold dear. Condolences to all her family and loved ones.
    Mia, you left us way too soon, but it is clear that you touched and impacted so many lives that will love you forever. Well done, dear Mia! You will be greatly missed.

  4. candle 4I was a few years behind Mia at SMMS, and our parents were close friends. Decades later, Ruthie and Leo moved to Texas, where my parents were living, and the four of them picked up right where they left off. Knowing the kind of people her mom and dad are, I know Mia was kind and big-hearted. The Leonellis really made the world a better place.

    I am so sorry for your loss. Please give my love and my mom’s to Ruthie.

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