By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Erma Venturella
Placeholder Image
Erma Viola Venturella, 100, died on Friday, June 10 after fighting cancer the last nine months of her life, while never losing her keen mind.

She was born in Fort Cobb, OK to Robert B. and Lillie (Stout) McQueen on July 25, 1910. She was eighth of nine children. All of her siblings preceded her in death.

She married John Venturella in 1930 and lived in Anadarko and Chickasha, OK before moving to Escalon, where she was a resident of Escalon for 65 years. Erma was very independent and lived alone following the death of her husband, John until she fell in June of 2010. After falling one of her children or a caregiver was always with her.

Her passion was gardening and canning her bounty. She always shared vegetables from her garden with family, friends and neighbors. She was an avid reader of novels and her Bible. Erma was very good at anything she did. When sewing she could look at a picture, make a pattern, then cut out and sew the outfit. She was also known for making tasty bread rolls and apple pie, besides being an exceptional cook.

She worked 25 years outside the home. She worked for 12½ years for Petri Winery and Allied Grape growers and then commuted to Lodi for 12½ years working for California Wine Association. She was also a caregiver to many relatives over the years.

Survivors include her three children, Beatrice Johnson of Escalon, John Venturella Jr. (Ann) of Ripon, and Ruth Cannizzaro of Modesto; nephew Allen McLain of Rosebud, TX, whom she thought of as a son; nine grandchildren, Royce Johnson (Connie), Elisa Belletto (John) all of Escalon, Christina Frederico of Clovis, Bob Peterson (Yen) of Oakdale, Phillip Peterson, Leslie Peterson, Anthony Cannizzaro (Anna) and Susan Moore (Richard) all of Modesto; 14 great grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild.

Visitation will be on Saturday, June 18 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. with her memorial service beginning at 11 a.m. in the Escalon United Methodist Church. She will be laid to rest on Monday, June 20 at 10 a.m. at Burwood Cemetery in Escalon.

Arrangements by Deegan Funeral Chapel in Escalon; visit the website at In lieu of flowers remembrances may be made to your favorite charity or to Escalon United Methodist Church, 2000 Jackson Ave., Escalon CA 95320 or to Alexander Cohen Hospice House, 2201 Euclid Ave., Hughson CA 95326.

The Escalon (Calif.) Times

June 15, 2011