Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Louis A. "Babe" Sturla - A Beautiful Man

Attentive readers know that I made a quick trip to Santa Cruz last week in order to shepherd my two grandsons while their parents went to Petaluma to celebrate the life and mourn the death of Michael's grandfather, Louis A. "Babe" Sturla.

Babe's obituary is on this page. I'm not sure how long it will be there, so I will include it below.

Louis R. "Babe" Sturla
March 31, 1924 - April 25, 2008
Petaluma, California

Passed away at home in Petaluma, CA , Friday, April 25, 2008, of congestive heart failure. Beloved husband for 62 years of Mary Leda Sturla. Loving father of Cheryl Strubeck and Robert Sturla (Heidi) both of Petaluma and the late Janice Hede Martinez. Adored grandfather of Michael (Lori), Diana (Bill), Kimberly (Bill), Amber, Angelina and Jimmy. Cherished great grandfather of 5. Brother of the late Melba M. Calegari and brother-in-law of Adolph Calegari of Petaluma. Beloved uncle of Arleen Calegari of Petaluma. A native of San Francisco, Ca. Age 84 years.

Babe, lifelong resident of Petaluma was well known for his involvement in youth sports, coaching CYO basketball and Little League teams for many years. Babe also served in the U. S. Army Air Force during World War II. He retired from the Petaluma Sanitary Disposal Co. in 1971 and later was involved in managing St. Vincent de Paul Society Thrift Stores in Sonoma County and later managed the Petaluma Kitchen for the St. Vincent de Paul Society. He was a member of St. Vincent de Paul Parish, YMI #9, Nicasio Parlor #183 NSGW, Harmony Grove #38 Druids, American Legion and SIRS #100.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, May 1, 2008 at the PARENT- SORENSEN MORTUARY & CREMATORY, 850 Keokuk St., Petaluma from 11:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. with the Vigil Service conducted at 7:00 P.M. Family and friends are also invited to meet on Friday, May 2, 2008 at 8:45 A.M. at the mortuary, thence to St. Vincent de Paul Church where a Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 9:30 A.M. Committal will follow at Cypress Hill Memorial Park. The family prefers memorials be made to Hospice of Petaluma or to St. Vincent de Paul Church.

I loved Babe. I kissed him goodbye last November, but he insisted on living until Michael came home from Iraq. What an absolutely wonderful, vital, loving man. He was always positive and encouraging, interested in everyone's lives, and proud of his family.

He and Leda welcomed Lori into their family and adored her - and the little boys. And he welcomed us - his grandson's in-laws - to his family. We attended one Thanksgiving and several Christmas holidays at their home in Petaluma, and reveled in the beauty and love of this family.

Babe died in the arms of his loving wife; I can't think of a better way to go. He died knowing that he had done everything he could to nurture and support his family and his community, and that his Lord and Savior would welcome him with "Well done, good and faithful servant." May he rest in peace.

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