Marlene Petrella, 79, of Fredonia, N.Y., died suddenly Friday (March 8, 2013). She was born in Dunkirk, N.Y., the daughter of the late Mable and Michael Grupa.
An area resident her entire life, she was a parishioner of St. Anthony's Church. She worked at the Chautauqua County Home and retired from the Department of Motor Vehicles, where friends and relatives looked forward to joining her line and learning what needed to be done to be in compliance. She was highly involved for a number of years with the local Democratic Party, frequently canvassing the community, manning voting booths and preparing snacks for the multiple meetings she attended.
Marlene was an avid gardener and made sure there were fresh arrangements in her home from April through November designed with flowers from her multiple gardens. She loved cooking and baking for all family gatherings and going to swim exercise classes. Most importantly, she was a devoted mother and proud grandmother, greatly loved by her grandchildren, who loved to share stories of her children's and grandchildren's adventures and successes.
She is survived by her seven children, George (Patricia) of Brocton, N.Y., Dr. Karen (Kevin Rowson) of Kennesaw, Ga., Dan (Peggy) of Brocton, Trudy of Fredonia, Sandy of Cincinnati, Ohio, John (Theresa) of Mendham, N.J., and Larry (Christine) of Katonah, N.Y.; two sisters, Maxine Kern of Dunkirk and Delores Monroe of Florida; grandchildren, Danny (Lena), Nicole, Jessica (Joel), Carlyn, Matt, Jillian, Sydney, Alec, Jack, Will, Conor, Christopher, Nick and Catherine; and several nieces and nephews.
Besides her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, George A. Petrella, whom she married on Oct. 20, 1951, and who passed away in January of 2009; her sister, Phyllis Grimm; and brother, Donald Grupa.
Donations can be made in Marlene's name to the God's Child Project, PO Box 1843 Bismark, N.D. 58502-1843.
Funeral services were held Tuesday, March 12 at 9 a.m. at St. Anthony's Church with Rev. C.J. Westfield, pastor, officiating. Relatives and friends were invited to attend the funeral mass and called at the Fantauzzi Funeral Home, 82 East Main St., Fredonia on Monday, March 11 from 3 to 5 and 7 to 9 p.m. Interment was at St. Hedwig Cemetery in Dunkirk, N.Y.