Manuel A. Sylvia
December 4, 1918 - July 30, 2013
On July 30, 2013, Manuel A. Sylvia passed away peacefully to be with the Lord. He was born in New Bedford, MA, one of five children born to Manuel and Mary Sylvia. His parents moved to the U.S. from the Azores in the late 1800's, then moved to Patterson, CA in the early 1920s where he attended Patterson High. Manuel played varsity baseball and blessed many people with his voice through the school choir. After graduating, he was fortunate to find work at El Solyo Ranch in Vernalis. Being first generation American, Manuel felt a sense of duty to serve in the U.S. Army. Prior to deployment, he married his beautiful wife Hilda Rose of Gustine in 1941. He served in the 202nd Field Artillery Group as a Master Sergeant in the European, African, Middle Eastern Theater. Manuel would always share stories of the various battles including Normandy and the push to the Rhine. He received various medals including the Bronze Star for retrieving supplies and ammunition behind enemy lines. After returning home, he moved his family to Modesto where he resided until his passing, and where he worked as a warehouse supervisor for Tillie Lewis Foods until he retired. Manuel's greatest joys in life were participating in the V.F.W., singing in the church choir and various community venues, golfing, camping, waterskiing and his family. He is survived by his wife Hilda, his sister Alice and three children: Jackie(Jim),Joseph(Darlene) and James(Debra); five grandchildren: Michelle, Rose, Diane, Desiree and Kenneth, and seven great-grandchildren. All services will be held on Wednesday, August 7, 2013, starting with mass at 9:30am at Saint Joseph's Catholic Church on Oakdale Rd in Modesto, followed by a reception. Final resting will take place with full military honors at the San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery in Santa Nella at 2:00pm. The family requests that all donations in Manuel's memory be sent to the Disabled Veteran's Association.
Published in the Modesto Bee on Aug. 4, 2013