Obituary of Michael Peter Bellardo
Michael (“Mike”) Peter Bellardo, 103, of Sunnyvale, California and former long-time resident of Jamestown, New York, passed away peacefully at 9:50 pm, Sunday, September 20, 2020 at the Belmont Village Senior Living facility in Sunnyvale, California. He was born on May 8, 1917 in Jamestown, New York, a son of Domenico and Teresa Bellardo. He lived a long and amazing life. He outlived the Soviet Union by a long shot. He was born during the Spanish Flu pandemic and passed away during the Covid-19 pandemic. And he never contracted either virus.
Mike served in the Army during World War II as a Staff Sergeant in a radar unit. At the time, radar was cutting edge technology. As part of his training, Mike took electronics courses at MIT. Units were deployed ahead of allied forces for early detection of opposition forces. As such, the opposition specifically targeted these radar units for destruction and death. Mike was part of the planned ground invasion of Japan; fortunately, the Japanese surrendered before Mike’s unit was to have landed. Instead, he was part of the humanitarian occupation force. Mike was honorably discharged in 1945.
After the Army, Mike was a businessman, first co-owning a jukebox business and then a gas station in the Jamestown area. Later in his career, he worked for Crescent Tool Company in Jamestown and relocated to Sumter, South Carolina, in 1975 when the company moved its operations there. He retired at age 65 in 1982 from the position of Production Control Manager. Following retirement, he moved to Central California with Josephine (“Josie”) Castiglione Bellardo, his beloved wife of 72 years, to be near his children and grandchildren and, in the fullness of time, his great grandchildren.
Mike and Josie fell in love at first sight. They met roller skating and married four months later, over the contrary advice of Josie’s dad, who wanted them to wait because of the war that the United States had recently entered in December 1941. While Mike was stationed in the United States, Josie traveled with him from one Army base to another.
In retirement, Mike and Josie traveled extensively throughout Europe, and visited their parents' birthplaces and relatives in Italy and Sicily. They also enjoyed traveling in Australia, New Zealand, Northern Africa, China, and South America. They took several cruises, including a memorable one through the Panama Canal. Mike loved taking pictures so these trips, as well as the family vacations while the kids were growing up, are well documented.
Mike will be sorely missed and lovingly remembered for his dedication to family and friends, his kindness, his gentleness and his quiet nature. Mike certainly was the strong, silent, grounded, earth-type person. Everybody loved him for his open and patient way. He loved tending to his backyard garden where he grew fresh vegetables that were the delight of his family. Mike and Josie cooked together and prepared many foods from scratch, including awesome homemade sausage and spaghetti sauce. A family ritual was canning tomatoes, pears and fruits every autumn in Jamestown so they had fresh food available during the cold and snowy winters. Mike had a keen and creative mind and enjoyed his homemade solutions to problems that popped up around the house.
Mike was a big proponent of education. Although he grew up poor and did not have an opportunity to advance beyond a high school education, he made sure his three children had the opportunity for college and postgraduate degrees. When he was at Crescent Tool in Jamestown, he took courses at a local community college to advance himself and qualify for promotions. Both he and Josie had a strong work ethic. Mike went to work every day, even when he was sick, and was a good provider for his family.
Mike served as an assistant Boy Scout troop leader while both of his sons were in boy scouts. On campouts, he cooked for the entire troop, so many more kids enjoyed the results of his cooking skills.
Mike was a member of the First Palo Alto United Methodist Church for more than a decade.
Mike was a math whiz, an avid reader and a crossword puzzle lover. He became an enthusiastic fan of the Golden State Warriors a few years ago.
Surviving are his three children, Louis (Patricia) Bellardo of Palo Alto, California, Brian Bellardo of Yonkers, New York and Pamela (Bruce) McCoy of Boulder Creek, California. He enjoyed spending time with his six grandchildren, John (Heather) Bellardo, Elizabeth Bellardo, Christina (Kyle) Harland, Katie (Kelly) Holcomb, Alice McCoy and Maureen (Jason) DeVries and his three great grandchildren, Julia and David Bellardo and Ben McCoy. Mike is also survived by several nieces and nephews.
Besides his parents, Mike was preceded in death by his beloved wife Josephine, whom he married on March 7, 1942, and who passed away on August 1, 2014, as well as five brothers.
A viewing will be held from 2 pm to 5 pm on Saturday, September 26, 2020, at the Los Altos Chapel of Spangler Mortuaries, 399 South San Antonio Road, Los Altos, California 94022.
The family will hold an outdoor memorial service limited to family members on Saturday, October 3, 2020. The Reverend Linda Holbrook, a pastor of the First Palo Alto United Methodist Church at the time Mike attended the weekly services there, will officiate.
Mike’s family would like to thank his many caregivers during his 11-year stay at Belmont Village, as well as the Hospice caregivers who attended Mike during his last weeks. All provided Mike with excellent care and concern.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to Hospice or your favorite charity.To plant a tree in memory of Michael Bellardo, please visit Tribute Store
Sunnyvale Chapel and Crematory
174 North Sunnyvale Avenue
Sunnyvale, California 94086
Telephone: (408) 736-6294
California License FD#: FD910
Mountain View Chapel
799 Castro Street
Mountain View, California 94041
Telephone: (650) 967-5546
California License FD#: FD579
Los Altos Chapel
399 South San Antonio Road
Loa Altos, California 94022
Telephone: (650) 948-6619
California License FD#: FD927
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