Giovanna Orlando


Giovanna Orlando

December 11, 1923 – November 11, 2019

68 Year Resident of Santa Cruz

A Mass of Christian Burial and vigil ceremony will be held in Santa Cruz for Giovanna Orlando who passed away with her loved ones at her bedside this past Monday. Born in Casarsa della Delizia, Italy, Mrs. Orlando would have celebrated her 96th birthday on December 11th.  Born to Giovanni and Angela Poldemengo, Giovanna lived in German occupied Italy during WW II and in 1951 left with her son John who was but a toddler; sailing from Genoa to Ellis Island. Upon arriving in New York, she and John boarded a train to California where she was rejoined with her husband Artensio Orlando who worked as the foreman at Davenport’s cement plant.  Artensio and Giovanna were long time parishioners of Holy Cross Catholic Church and the Italian Catholic Federation.  Artensio preceded her in death in 1990 and her son John passed away in 2016.

Her grandchildren will forever remember their “Nonnie” as a loving person who enjoyed long walks, was kind to all creatures, including the squirrels who frequented her walnut trees, and as a fabulous cook whose gnocchi was renowned by all who were blessed to partake. She worked hard, cooked delicious meals, and loved Italian music; her favorites being Italian Folk Songs and the Three Tenors.   Giovanna was a talented gardener of both the lovely roses and bountiful vegetables she grew for her family and friends. Her work ethic will be a continued and cherished example of perseverance and devotion to others.

Giovanna is survived by her daughter-in-law Virginia Coe Orlando, her two grandchildren Amy Leigh Orlando and John Lloyd Orlando, all of Santa Cruz; her sister Luisa Moras; and nieces Lucia and Gladys and their respective families in Italy; and her sister-in-law, Alverda Orlando and nieces Rosemary, Lucia, and Luisa, and their respective families in California. Giovanna also leaves several great-nieces and great-nephews and friends, both here and in Italy. Her family would like to acknowledge the loving care provided to Giovanna by her devoted caregivers during the last several years of her life.

A vigil service and recitation of the Holy Rosary will be held at Benito and Azzaro Pacific Gardens Chapel on Sunday afternoon beginning at 5 p.m.  Friends may pay their respects at the chapel from 4 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. on Sunday.  The mass will be celebrated on Monday, November 18 at Holy Cross Mission (Emmet and School Streets) in Santa Cruz beginning at 10 a.m.  Committal services will follow at Holy Cross Mausoleum.  Any kind acts of charity can be made in her memory to the Alzheimer’s Association (550 Water St Suite l-2, Santa Cruz, CA 95060) or to”The Trees Remember” (the