Merna Jean Falleri passed away peacefully with family at her side on Thursday, August 18, 2022. She was 92 years old.
Born at the Mary Schafsma House in Santa Rosa on Nov 30, 1929, Merna was the only child of Howard and Zelma Fry. Merna attended Santa Rosa schools until her family’s move to Elk, California in 1942 where she resided in what is now the Sandpiper Inn. While in Elk, Merna attended both Mendocino and Point Arena high schools, graduating from Point Arena High in 1947. It was during that time that a friendship with her dear friend, Norma Falleri, became life-changing when she was introduced to Norma’s older brother, Roy, who had returned from World War II, and the rest, as they say, is history. Merna was welcomed wholeheartedly by the large, boisterous Falleri family, and was thankful for the love of her new brothers, sisters, and Mother-in-law, who taught her how to cook Italian and embraced her as a daughter.
While living in Elk, Merna was a housewife and mother, raising sons Alan and Michael in that small, close-knit community. Merna took great pride in her family and home, always attending every sporting event, and she was an active member of the community. Merna, Roy and family later moved to Cloverdale where they resided for 30 years, then later move to Ukiah.
Merna’s great joy in life was her family and a favorite role was that of “Nonnie” to her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. In her later years, she enjoyed traveling to their homes and you would often see her cheering from the sidelines while attending their functions and sporting events. Merna loved spending time with friends and family. She was fun, vivacious, and had a quick wit and sharp mind until the very end. Her kind heart, zest for life, generosity, and love for cooking, gardening and animals will live on in the many lives that she has touched and the family she loved so much.
Merna was preceded in death by her husband of 53 years, Roy Falleri, in 2001, and her son Michael Falleri in 2015. She is survived by son, Alan Falleri (Patty Bruder) of Willits, granddaughters Jennifer Burke (Tony) of Danville, CA, and Michelle Dirks (David) of Loveland, CO, and grandsons Shaun Falleri (Jannie) of Hopland and Chad Falleri of Cloverdale. Merna also leaves behind 12 great-grandchildren, Alec and Lindsay Clark, Noah and Maddie Burke, Hannah and Matthew Dirks, Gavin, Aidan, and Gwen Falleri, Dakota Falleri, and Riley and Owen Allen. Special family members, daughters-in-law Sharon Falleri and Jackie Falleri, and step-grandchildren Joel and Janine Berry and Laura Allen, and Godson, Lonn Stornetta, along with numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and friends, all mourn her passing. She will be greatly missed but never forgotten.
There will be a private family graveside service at Evergreen Cemetery in Boonville. Following the gravesite service, friends and family are invited to gather to celebrate Merna’s beautiful life at Barra Winery in Redwood Valley on Saturday, September 3rd from 1:30 to 4:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Humane Society of Inland Mendocino County or your charity of choice.