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Ernest L. "Big Ernie" Chavez


1940 - 2011 Obituary Condolences
Ernest L. "Big Ernie" Chavez Obituary
May 1, 1940 - February 12, 2011

Age 70, of San Pedro, CA, passed away peacefully while surrounded by his family on February 12, 2011. He was born in Watts, CA then moved to Wilmington, CA, and finally settling in San Pedro, CA over 45 years ago. Ernie is preceded in death by his wife of 41 years, Dolores J. Chavez; his parents, Antonio and Anna Chavez; and his grandson, Trever Chavez-Feipel. Ernie is survived by his three children: Diana (Bill) Chavez-Feipel, Laura (Richard) D'Anna, and Ernie (Meridith) Chavez II. He is also survived by 10 grandchildren: Aaryn Maes, Lauryn Maes, Tyler Chavez-Feipel, Tayler Chavez-Feipel, Ernie Chavez III, Matthew D'Anna, Anthony D'Anna, Evan Chavez, Eyan Chavez, and Emma Chavez. Ernie also leaves behind two brothers and one sister: Lou (Joy) Chavez, Larry (Karen) Chavez, and Vivian (Joe) Palacios; his brother-in-law: Robie (Daphne) Osornio; sister-in-law: Dee Dee (Joe) Mendoza; his father-in-law and mother-in-law: Roberto and Lucia Osornio; god-daughter: Vilma Pancho; life-long friend: Bobby Negrete, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Ernie was a very proud and well respected member of the ILWU Local 13 for over 37 years and was also a foreman with Local 94 for a little over a year. Ernie is perhaps best remembered by his union family as the "Sgt-at-Arms" at both the Local 13 and Casual Dispatch Halls. Some of Ernie's other jobs growing up and in adulthood included being an usher at the original Warner Grand Theater, a maintenance man at Marineland, a private investigator for the law office of Olney, Levy, Kaplan & Tenner, and he was the owner of the former Don's Market in San Pedro, CA. In his later years, Ernie was often seen on his scooter visiting local businesses and cruising around Western Ave. Ernie was known for his quick wit, the ability to make people laugh, and for always trying to help people and make them happy. He was a big and tough man, but had a heart of gold and touched people's lives everywhere that he went. Celebration of Life reception to be held at the Dalmatian American Club (Slav Hall), 1639 South Palos Verdes St., San Pedro, CA 90731. Join us Friday, February 18, anytime between 3:00 PM and 11:00 PM (allowing for friends to come as they can) In lieu of flowers, we ask that donations be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). Checks can be made out to: LLS, and sent to 1316 264th St., Harbor City, CA 90710. You are welcomed to leave the family a message or share memories at mcnerneysmortuary.com or www.dailybreeze.com/obits.

Published in Daily Breeze on Feb. 16, 2011
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