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F. Charles Merlone


1924 - 2014 Obituary Condolences
F. Charles Merlone Obituary
F. Charles Merlone
November 22, 1924 - January 23, 2014
Resident of Moraga, California
Born Oakland, California on November 22, 1924, died January 23, 2014 , age 89. First generation American son of Carlo and Fiorinda Merlone, immigrants from Cossombrato, Italy, a small village in the Piemonte region. Predeceased by his sister, Olga Brezzo. Survived by wife Carol (married 1950) of Moraga; sons Steven (Angela) of Menlo Park, James (Frances) of Lafayette, and Peter (Denise) of San Francisco; grandchildren Joseph, Gina (Grant Marek), Michael, Kathryn, Juliana, Kristen, Alexandra Altholz and Addison Altholz; and great grandchildren Harper and Kennedy Marek. Chuck was particularly proud of having every grandchild graduate from college. Resident of Moraga for over 50 years.
Chuck took great pride in his Italian heritage and made a special point of recounting the journey his mother and father made to America. Chuck was raised in the Temescal district of Oakland, where his parents resided for over 60 years.
A member of the Greatest Generation, Chuck took a leave from his studies at UC Berkeley, serving in the 457th Bombardment Group during 1943-44 as a 2nd Lieutenant and navigator in a B-17 and was injured in a bombing mission over Germany. After a lengthy convalescence, Chuck was placed back in service ferrying aircraft to the Pacific Theater through the end of the war. He received the Purple Heart. Chuck continued his love for flying with the receipt of his pilot's license in the early 1960's, and he spent countless hours in the air with his good friend Bill Cryer.
Returning to UC in 1946, he graduated with a degree in business in 1948. He was the first in his family to graduate from college. This began a lifetime affinity for the Golden Bears, particularly in football. Each fall began with the high hopes of another football season, and Chuck rarely missed home games until recent years when his health began to fail. Together with his father in law Hale Luff, wife Carol, and continuing through son Steven (and wife Angela) and granddaughter Gina (and her husband Grant), he shares four successive generations at UC Berkeley.
Chuck was the long-time owner of Ideal Roofing in Oakland and his business continues on today through the leadership of his son James. Chuck was an avid outdoorsman, spending countless days fishing and duck hunting. He delighted in introducing the outdoors to his sons and nephew John Brezzo, and most importantly, relished the story-telling that followed.
The family would like to thank Chuck's longtime caregiver, Luz Mora, for her support and encouragement over a lengthy illness.
Chuck will be interred at the VA Cemetery in Dixon, California in a private family ceremony. A celebration of his life will be held at noon on Friday, March 7 at the Veterans Memorial Building, 3780 Mt. Diablo Boulevard in Lafayette, CA. Donations in his memory should be directed to either the UC Berkeley General Scholarship Fund or UC Athletics.

Published in East Bay Times on Feb. 7, 2014
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