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Erelene Ferreira, formerly of Greenfield, 81

Modified: Thursday, Aug 21st, 2008

Passing as quietly and graciously as she lived, Erelene Ferreira, 81, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 13, with her loving daughters by her side. She was diagnosed 1 1/2 years ago with pancreatic cancer.

Erelene was born to Ira and Lovina Hudson on Dec. 25, 1926, in Mt. Judea, Ark.

In 1930, she and her family moved to the King City/Greenfield area to get involved in the farming business. Erelene met and married the love of her life, Buster Ferreira, in 1949.

They made their home and raised their family in Greenfield where they owned Ferreira Blacksmith Shop for more than 40 years. Erelene was the bookkeeper and continued to keep the books even after selling the shop.

As a young woman, she enjoyed PTA, 4-H, square dancing, and King City and Greenfield Riding Clubs. Later, she became active in Monterey County Cowbelles (Cattlewomen) serving as a board member for several years. She was selected Cattlewomen of the Year and Cattlewomen "Mom" of the Year. For many years, Erelene served as chief cook and organizer for the annual roundups and brandings she and Buster hosted while raising beef cattle on various ranches throughout the valley. In 1988, Erelene and Buster were selected as "Mom and Dad of the Year" earning them official State Senate and House Resolutions. She was a member of the Monterey County Tumbleweed RV Club and King City Silver Kings and Queens.

In her retirement, she enjoyed many motor home and fishing trips with her husband and friends. She was a great fisherman, often reeling in the biggest fish or catching the most fish of the day. At the age of 74, she and Buster indulged in a white-water rafting trip down the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon. She had a memorable trip to Italy in 2006 with her family.

In 1999, Erelene was on one of her yearly trips to Eagle Lake when she received a phone call from her family informing her she had won Publisher's Clearing House Million Dollar Giveaway. In her typical manner, she mused at how many stamps the non-winning entries had cost her over the 33 years she had been entering. She and her family were treated to a trip to New York City as a guest of PCH, staying at The Plaza Hotel, being wined-and-dined in grand style, visiting the PCH headquarters, and seeing the sights of the city. With some of her winnings, Erelene and Buster enjoyed a beautiful 50th wedding anniversary celebration with many family and friends.

Erelene will be well remembered as a loving and dedicated wife and partner in the many activities she and Buster shared together through the years, most notably their dancing, always being the first to hit the dance floor and staying to until the last dance.

Her lovingly supportive role as a mother and grandmother meant many hours seated on hard benches at rodeos, track meets, volleyball, baseball, softball, football, basketball soccer games, water polo meets and music concerts. At family functions, her grandchildren all wanted to take home any of her leftover famous potato salad. She was a "comfort style" cook and a self-made seamstress, making many of her children and grandchildren's school, prom, costume and rodeo outfits.

She was preceded in death by her son, Terry in 1991, who also had pancreatic cancer; and her husband of 55 years, Buster, in 2004.

She is survived by her daughters, Debbie (Dave) Pedrazzi of Salinas, Sandy (Monte) Larick of Chualar, and Leslie (Pat) Jones of Templeton; sister, Lois Norman of King City; grandchildren, Justin (Tiffany) Ferreira of Templeton, Casey (Jessica) Ferreira of Atascadero, Nicci (Danny) DeRoza, Nette (Braden) Hoover and Peter Pedrazzi of Salinas, Tyler, Austin, and Hannah Larick of Chualar, and Pierce Larick of Northridge, Blaine and Preston Jones of Templeton; great-grandson, Dylan Ferreira of Templeton; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be held on Thursday, Aug. 21, from 3 to 7 p.m. at Struve & Laporte Funeral Home, 41 West San Luis St., Salinas.

Funeral Services will be held at 1 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 22, at Struve & Laporte Funeral Chapel.

Graveside Service will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Friday at King City Cemetery District, 1010 Broadway St., King City.

Memorials can be made to the American Cancer Society, 945 South Main St. #201, Salinas, CA 93901 and Hospice of the Central Coast, 2 Upper Ragsdale Ct., Monterey, CA 93940.

Arrangements by Struve and Laporte Chapel.

Online Condolences: www.struveandlaporte.com

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