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Lea M. Romanelli left our world to be with the Lord on February 23, 2017. Lea was born on October 19, 1924 in San Sosti, Italy, the daughter of Carmelo and Vincenzina Santelli. At the age of two she emigrated with her parents to Montreal, Canada, first passing through Ellis Island, New York. After living through the Great Depression and the hardships of World War II Lea met and married Hector Romanelli on June 19, 1943 in Montreal, Canada. Her son Frank, now of Nebo, North Carolina was born in Montreal and her daughter Linda of Oklahoma City was born in Philadelphia. Lea and Hector had emigrated to the United States in 1947 to seek opportunity and a better life. Both Linda and Frank survive her.
Lea left an indelible mark of love and caring on everyone who knew her. Her marriage of 45 years to Hector was a testimony of love and loyalty. Lea was a superb Italian cook. Many of her recipes remain in the family but sadly, some have been lost forever.
Lea and Hector were people of faith and believed deeply in the Lord. They taught the virtues of sacrifice, hard work and education. They provided a loving, stable home and ensured both children got a quality education. Nothing made Lea more proud than the accomplishments of her children, and later of her grandchildren and great granchildren.
Lea led a rich life, was a resident of three countries and fluent in three languages. When she became an American citizen in 1956 it was one of the proudest moments of her life. Lea had a striking and ageless beauty. She dressed superbly and presented herself elegantly. But it was her inner beauty that transcended all.
Lea was preceded in death by her husband Hector. In addition to her children Frank and Linda Romanelli she is survived by her daughter in law Cindi Romanelli and her grandchildren Traci Morena of Brookfield, CT, Nicole Christensen of Cary, NC, Autumn Caputi of Oklahoma City and Christopher Romanelli of Fort Worth, TX. She is also survived by six great grandchildren, Rylie Caputi, Kyle Christensen, Noah Christensen, Aidan Romanelli, Lexi Romanelli and Reed Romanelli.
One of the people most dear to Lea is her brother Eddy Santelli of Montreal, Quebec. No brother and sister were ever so close or caring of each other as these. Lea leaves an empty space in Eddy’s heart.
Lea loved music. She danced, sang and played the mandolin along with Hector who was an accomplished accordianist. She was also a magnificent seamstress and knitter. Oklahoma City was her last home and many Sooner and Thunder fans have scarves knitted by Lea Romanelli.
Lea left her mark on Montreal, Canada where she grew up; on Harrison, NY where she raised her children; on Vero Beach, FL where she retired, and finally on Oklahoma City where she grew even closer to Linda, Autumn and Rylie. They were always there for her and she rewarded them with unconditional love. Lea, parent, grandmother, friend , inspiration, you will be greatly missed.
A memorial service will be held for Lea on (pending) in Oklahoma City. A second service will be held this summer in Montreal, Canada where she will be reunited forever with her husband Hector and Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
The family requests that in lieu of flowers a donation be made in Lea’s name to Integris Hospice House, 13920 Quailbrook Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73134. Integris Hospice took superb care of our Mom in her final days and we are deeply grateful.