Elva Rose Andrews nee Marchese, Roberge passed May 23, 2017 surrounded by her family. She was born April 11 1927 in Florida, youngest of 4 sisters. She grew up during the Depression and shared great stories with her children and grandchildren of life during those times. After her mother died in her Junior year in high school she went to work to help take care of her father. One of her favorite jobs was as counter waitress at a coffee shop near the train depot. She came to know many circus performers from the Barnum and Bailey Circus who wintered there in Sarasota.
In 1946 while visiting her sister in California she met and married a Corpsman, John Marchese, stationed at Camp Pendleton. They had two children, Eliane and Michael. John was sent to Korea where he died at Choisin Reservoir while trying to evacuate wounded. Elva remained in Oceanside, working at Marty’s Steak House downtown Oceanside and volunteering at Mission Elementary School.
In 1956 she met and married Art Roberge and they had four children: James, Mary Ann, David, and Amy. They owned and operated Snow White Laundry in South Oceanside for over 20 years. The laundry was a popular after school stop for all the grand children and their friends.
Elva took care of the athletic uniforms for Oceanside High School; and El Camino High School and nursing equipment for MiraCosta College for many years. She was a familiar face to all the coaches, picking up dirty uniforms early in the morning and returning them cleaned, repaired and folded the following day. Often, she made several trips a day to make sure the athletes had clean, mended uniforms. She loved taking care of ‘her boys’ and was sad when they finally retired.
Elva then devoted her time to her children and grandchildren. Family was a very important part of Elva’s life. No one was a stranger for long. She enjoyed taking care of people. Elva was the ultimate nurturer. Everyone was welcomed into her home. There was always enough lunch or dinner for one more. And more than one spent a night or two in the spare room then left with clean clothes and a bag of homemade goodies.
She supported all her children’s activities and was leader or co leader for her kids and grandkids Brownie Troupe, Cub Scouts, Camp Fire Girls. She was a regular at baseball, football, basketball, soccer games as well as plays and concerts and dance recitals. All her children’s friends called her “Mom”, and later in her life “Gramma Roberge” and everyone wanted to be invited to dinner on Thursday for her famous spaghetti.
She was active in St. Mary, Star of the Sea parish and a long-time member of St. Anthony’s Guild. For many years, she washed and pressed all the altar cloths, and could be counted on for several jars of her famous strawberry jam for any fundraiser. Over the decades, she was room mother for several of her children and then grandchildren doing everything from serving up hot cocoa and powdered donuts, to driving students to extracurricular activities.
Elva is survived by 6 children, 9 grandchildren, and 14 great grandchildren.
Visitation will be Tuesday, June 6 from 4:00-8:00 PM, Room 2 at Eternal Hills Mortuary. Memorial Service will be held Wednesday, June 7 at 1:00 PM in the Eternal Hills Chapel. 1999 El Camino Real, Oceanside 92054
The family requests any memorial donations be made to Alzheimer’s Association, 6632 Convoy Court San Diego, CA 92111