Julia Marie Acri passed away peacefully, just hours after her 100th birthday. Her spirit was finally at peace after reaching her determined goal to be a centenarian; her son whispered she made it, she could go, and soon after, Julia let the angels take her home.
Julia was born January 1, 1914 to Peter and Mary Papeaka in Cuddy, Pennsylvania. She was one of twelve children. Julia grew up in Cuddy, PA and worked in Pittsburg before moving to San Francisco, California. On August 1, 1937, she married Vincent James Acri and they lived in the bay area until 1954 when they moved to Turlock and lived on a small farm on Bradbury Road. While living in Turlock, Julia worked for Miller’s Dried Flowers, and was a school bus driver for Tegner, Chatom, and Turlock School districts. She was also an avid member of Sacred Heart Parish. Julia adored animals and they loved her as well. At any given time, the farm was full of dogs, cats, and ducks that would follow her wherever she went. Even the livestock would greet her as she approached them.
After her husband’s death in 1986, Julia moved to Myers Way, in Turlock. As her health declined, she moved to Turlock Nursing and Rehab and remained there until her death. At the age of 97, the doctors informed her she had about six months to live. Though she was tired and frail, her strong spirit and intense drive to live carried her on for three more years, defying the doctors and reaching her goal. If any lesson should be learned from the life Julia lived, it is that striving dedication that kept her alive so long dwells within each of us and it is in our power to bring it forth. And though the body dies, the spirit lives on forever in the heavens and in our memories.
Julia is preceded in death by her parents, Peter and Mary Papeaka, her loving husband, Vincent Acri, and seven of her siblings. She is survived by her son, Thomas Acri, sisters Tillie, Alice, and Dolores, of Pennsylvania, and Evelyn of New York, and sisters-in-law Mary Barbara and Marie Acri Randaldi of California, and Mamie Papeaka of Pennsylvania.
A recitation of the rosary will be held Thursday, January 16, at Turlock Funeral Home, 425 N. Soderquist Rd., in Turlock, at 6:00 p.m. The funeral mass will follow on Friday, January 17, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 1220 Lyons Ave., also in Turlock, at 11:00 a.m., with interment in Turlock Memorial Park.
Flowers and cards may be sent in care of Turlock Funeral Home.
The family would like to invite those attending the service to a pot luck reception at the Turlock Funeral Home. Those interested in bringing a dish may contact the funeral home (209) 632-9111 to get in contact with the family.