Nicola Melfi, 94, of Beverly Hills, died peacefully Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012. He was born Thursday, May 23, 1918, in Leeperville, Pa., to Luigi and Micalina (Iannona) Melfi. At 18 months, Mr. Melfi's family moved to Isernia, Italy; and at 18 years old, he immigrated back to Detriot, Mich. He enjoyed a 35-year career with the Ford Motor Company. In the prime of his life, Mr. Melfi loved to make wine in his basement, garden, play poker and attend Detroit Tiger games with his son. In 1976, he moved his wife and son to Beverly Hills, where he became a member of Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church. He was a proud member of the United Auto Workers Union. Nicola actively attended the Citrus County Senior Center. He loved making people laugh, going out to dinner with his family and lending a helping hand to those in need. And even in his senior years, "Pops" was the life of the party, and his lighthearted spirit will always be missed.
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Nicola was preceded in death by his wife Emma Melfi in December of 2003; daughter Judith Kleinsmith; brothers Samuel, Charlie, Anthony and Guy Melfi; and sisters Theresa Cococcetta and Millie Nacco. Survivors include his brother Michele Melfi of Florida; and sister Rosaria Melfi of Italy; son Michael Melfi and wife Victoria Seijas Melfi of Beverly Hills; grandchildren Shalyn Barker and husband Patrick of Citrus Springs, Brian Augustine of Michigan, Michelle Cavallin of Canada, Ronald Augustine of Washington, Sean Powers of Michigan, Leslie Warren of Texas; and great-grandchildren his "Lil' Girl" Emmy Barker, Graham "Lil' Mike" Barker, Nicole Tosti, Lauren Tosti, Brandon Tosti, Kelsey Augustine, Stefania Cavallin, Ashley Augustine, Zachary Augustine, Isabella Cavallin, Axel Augustine, Mason Warren and Avery Warren.
A visitation celebrating the life of Nicola Melfi will be open to the public from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18, 2012, at Fero Funeral Home. Funeral Mass 9 a.m. Friday, Oct. 19, 2012, at Our Lady of Grace with entombment to follow at Fero Memorial Gardens. Arrangements entrusted to Fero Funeral Home, www.ferofuneralhome.com.
Published in Citrus County Chronicle on Oct. 18, 2012