Merced Sun-Star - - Obituaries -

Maria Elena Giampaoli passed away at her home sur­rounded by loved ones on Fri­day, July 10, 2020 in Le Grand. She was born Au­gust 5, 1940 in Merced, CA to her Ital­ian im­mi­grant par­ents, Carlo and Elena Bianchi. Maria at­tended Le Grand area schools and grad­u­ated Vale­dic­to­rian of Le Grand High School in 1958. In 1960, she mar­ried Ray­mond Giampaoli and to­gether they raised three chil­dren.

Maria’s life was grounded in her love of fam­ily, her Ital­ian her­itage, a deep sense of com­mu­nity, her faith and a love of agri­cul­ture. She was the quintessen­tial “Soc­cer Mom” sup­port­ing her chil­dren’s mul­ti­tude of ac­tiv­i­ties. She was a Le Grand 4-H Club leader and taught Our Lady of Lour­des’ youth re­li­gious classes for many years. In ad­di­tion, she was a mem­ber of the Le Grand Com­mu­nity Gar­den Club and the Le Grand Mu­nic­i­pal Ad­vi­sory Coun­cil where she proudly served in a va­ri­ety of of­fices. All this while re­main­ing a sup­port­ive farmer’s wife of her hus­band’s pro­fes­sional pur­suits and the growth of their LeGrand­based farm­ing com­pany, Live Oak Farms.

Beyond the bor­ders of Le Grand, “Momma Maria’s” nur­tur­ing dis­po­si­tion lead her to a life­span of com­mu­nity ser­vice.

She was ac­tive in Cal­i­for­nia Women for Agri­cul­ture and the Merced County Farm Bureau and was awarded Cal­i­for­nia State Univer­sity, Fresno’s Com­mon Thread’s “Women of Dis­tinc­tion” award for her agri­cul­tural stew­ard­ship. She proudly served on the Merced County Com­mu­nity Foun­da­tion and Hinds Hos­pice Boards and trea­sured the preser­va­tion of her Ital­ian her­itage by par­tic­i­pat­ing in Merced County’s Ital­ian Catholic Fed­er­a­tion and its Ital­ian Amer­i­can Women’s Lodge. And, amid all these, she re­mained an ac­tive and de­voted parish­ioner of Our Lady of Lour­des Catholic Church in Le Grand.

She is pre­ceded in death by her par­ents, her Hus­band, Ray­mond, and her brother, Natal­ino. She is sur­vived by her chil­dren Bob (Jeanne), Donna Vaughan (Scott) and Sandy Del Real (Steve), six grand­chil­dren Do­minic, Bri­ana, Carlo (Carolina), Natalie, Ethan and Ai­dan as well as sev­eral nieces and neph­ews and other trea­sured fam­ily mem­bers and friends. Fi­nally, Maria’s fam­ily would like to ex­tend its sin­cere thanks to the many com­pas­sion­ate care­givers who took care of Maria over the last 5 years.

Maria will be laid to rest pri­vately at Ever­green Me­mo­rial Park, Merced.

Do­na­tions may be made in Maria’s mem­ory to Merced Catholic Char­i­ties, 336 W. Main, Merced, CA 95340 or to Hinds Hos­pice of Merced, 410 W. Main St., #A, Merced, CA 95340-4822.


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