Shirley Rae Martella, 89 of King City passed away on Tuesday, July 24, 2018 at Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital with her family by her side.
She was born to Paul and Blanche Chilson in Watsonville, Calif. on July 6, 1929. She was raised in Sacramento and Salinas. She graduated from Salinas High School at age 17.
She married her husband after graduation and 2 years later their daughter was born and 2 years after had twin boys.
She was a hard worker: various jobs as a chambermaid in King City at local motels, Hearne’s Warehouse and Meyer tomatoes for several years and worked in the cherry orchard in San Ardo. She also worked on their ranch driving truck. She also took care of the books of their trucking business.
She and her husband lived in Klamath Falls, Oregon for 20 years and bought a ranch in Malin, Oregon. They enjoyed traveling in their motorhome – camping, hunting and fishing.
Shirley moved back to King City shortly after the death of her husband in 2005 to be closer to family.
There was hardly anything she couldn’t do with one arm. She was in a car accident and lost her right arm when she was 15 as a majorette going to a ball game with some friends. She always challenged her family – and she “was” the fastest one to peel a potato. If you were her friend, then you got a knitted slipper that she had made. She literally made hundreds. She also raced hardtop cars and came in first in what they called “Powder-Puff Derbys” in Santa Maria, Calif.
She was a lifetime member of the Swiss American Club.
She was a fun person and had many friends and will be greatly missed.
Shirley is preceded in death by her parents; and husband, William Martella; son, Harry Martella; brother, Marvin Chilson; and ex-daughter-in-law, Gladys Martella.
Shirley is survived by her beloved animals; Mickey, Alice and Diane; daughter, Linda Strohn and son-in-law, David of King City; son, Harold Martella and Paula Banchero of Salinas; granddaughters, Tina Schrader and husband, Sam of Fallon, Nevada, Lisa Martella of Yucaipa, Calif.; great granddaughter Bella Herrera also of Yucaipa, Calif.; and many nieces and nephews.
Donations in honor of Shirley can be made to the charity of your choice.
A Celebration of Life is being planned for August, 14th, at St. John’s Catholic Church Hall, 504 N. Third Street, King City, CA, 93930 from 12pm-4pm.
Arrangements were entrusted to Eddington Funeral Services, 429 Bassett St., King City, (831) 385-5400, www.EFS-Cares.com .