Eliseu “Eli” S. Mendonça, Sr., age 67, entered into rest on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 at his Crows Landing residence. Mr. Mendonça was born in Feteira, Terceira, Açores and immigrated to the United States in 1957, and together with his parents and siblings, settled in Tulare, California. The family also resided in Stockton and Tracy. In 1963, the family moved their dairy operation to Willows where they resided for five years. In 1967, the opportunity arose for the family to purchase their own dairy farm in Crows Landing, where the business has operated the past 46 years. Eli’s work in the dairy business included many hours of sacrifice and hard work, which he enjoyed up to the time of his accident in October 2005.
Eli was a member of Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Patterson, the F.D.E.S. (Festa do Divino Espirito Santo) of Patterson where he served as President (1988 and 1989) and Treasurer (1990 – 2006), P.F.S.A. Council No. 73 of Patterson, Our Lady Miracles Society of Gustine and Our Lady of Fatima of Turlock. He also served in the National Guard in the late 1960’s and as director for the Reclamation District of Stanislaus County in which he served for 20 years.
He enjoyed attending family gatherings, festas, bullfights, going to casinos and card parties. Attending his weekly Sunday mass was very important to him followed by lunch at Mil’s. Some of his memorable trips were visiting Hawaii, Washington D.C., Mexico and his trips to the Açores. He was a devoted and loving husband, father, grandfather and brother. He will be greatly missed.
Eli is survived by his daughters, Patricia Lopes (Clemente) of Turlock, Ermelinda Ornelas (Manuel) of Turlock, sons, Eliseu “Eli” S. Mendonça, Jr. of Crows Landing, Mathew Mendonça (Jocelyn) of Modesto, grandchildren Mark and Anthony Lopes and Matelyn Mendonça. He is also survived by his siblings La-Salete Pereira of Waterford, Norbert Mendonça of El Nido, Fatima Mancebo of Chowchilla, Delmira Cuaresma of Hayward, Joe Mendonça of Modesto, Carmina Pacheco of Hilmar, Ermelinda Mendonça, Frank Mendonça, John Mendonça, all of Crows Landing, mother-in-law, Mary Couto of Willows, several brother and sister-in-laws and numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Ermelinda Couto Mendonça (4-3-04), his parents Francisco Mendonça (8-10-03) and Delmida Mendonça (6-20-01) and his brother Leonel Mendonça (9-27-12).
Visitation will be Monday, April 8, 2013 from 10:00am to 4:00pm at Whitehurst, Norton & Dias Funeral Chapel, 286 W. Main St., Turlock. Vigil and Rosary will be held on Monday, April 8th at 7:00pm and the funeral mass will be held on Tuesday, April 9th at 11:00am. Both services are at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 529 “I” Street, Patterson. Internment at Turlock Memorial Park Mausoleum, 575 N. Soderquist Rd., Turlock. Remembrances may be made to the Father Connors Memorial Fund, Sacred Heart Church, 529 “I” Street, Patterson 95363.
Arrangements are under the direction of Whitehurst, Norton & Dias Funeral Service (209)634-4904 www.whitehurstnortondiasfunerals.com