Viola L. DeLuca

Viola L. DeLuca

April 30, 1926 – January 6, 2021

She is survived by her daughters, Therese DeLuca and Kathleen “Nena” Brabec (Frederick Bender); granddaughter, Kristina Brabec; two step grandchildren, Jonathan Bender (Jenny) and Emma Bender.  Preceded in death by parents, Theresa and Dominic Alberico; husband, Anthony DeLuca; siblings: Angie Giordano, and Alfred, Joseph, Samuel, and Harold Alberico.

Private Family VIGIL SERVICE: Tuesday, January 12, 2021 at 6:30pm.  MASS OF CHRISTIAN BURIAL: Wednesday, January 13, 2021 at 11:00am at Holy Cross Catholic Church, 4810 Woolworth Ave.  Interment, Calvary Cemetery.

To view live broadcasts of the Vigil Service and Mass, go to www.heafeyheafey.com and click the “View Live Service” button on the home page.


Viola was born in Denver, Colorado, on April 30, 1926, to immigrant parents from Calabria, Italy. She was fourth in line out of six kids: Alfred, Joe, Angie, (Viola), Sam and Harold. Alfred was the studious one. Joe was the dashing charmer. Angie was the serious musician. And Viola, nicknamed “Tilly” by her uncle, was the small but mighty tomboy whose batting skills were regularly sought out by her younger brothers for neighborhood baseball games.

In 1941, Viola’s father moved the family to Omaha to work in the shops at Union Pacific Railroad. In 1944, Viola met the love of her life, a sweet, blue-eyed Sicilian named Anthony “(Tony) DeLuca, on a blind date. Tony was “painfully bashful.” Viola often said, “If I hadn’t kissed him first, we never would have gotten married.” A year later, after Tony’s mother objected to her son’s marriage to a non-Sicilian, the young couple eloped to Marysville, Kansas.

In 1955, Vi and Tony welcomed their first daughter, Therese (Terri), into the world, and five years after that, Kathleen (Nena). Vi’s children were her pride and joy. In 1987, their granddaughter, Kristina, was born and became their shining star. Nothing was more important to Vi than her family.

Vi’s loving, selfless and giving nature, combined with her innate sense of style and creativity, was a blessing to her family — and to everyone whose lives she touched. She was a beautiful seamstress who sewed all of her children’s clothes. The hum of the sewing machine could often be heard late into the evening and early morning hours as she worked to finish an outfit for a special occasion. Vi also made all of her own dresses out of the most colorful, silky fabrics. She wore her beautiful dresses every day of her life.

Vi was an active member of the “Handy Annies” chapter of the 4-H Extension Club for over 20 years. She was brilliant when it came to crafts and ceramics. As much as she enjoyed the process of creating, she loved sharing her beautiful works with family and friends even more.

Vi was an active member of Blessed Sacrament Parish and was the “batter lady” at the church’s fish fries for over 30 years. In 1985, she was named Catholic Woman of the Year.

Vi’s kitchen was the heart of her home. She and Tony cooked side-by-side and opened their home to everyone. They were too busy loving and feeding people to ever judge them. Together, they were the power couple of peace, and a conduit of love and understanding for all who knew them.

We thank God for sharing this beautiful soul with us for over 94 years. We love you for all eternity, Mom.

7 Comments

  • elizabeth vleck Posted January 11, 2021 1:42 pm

    So sorry Nena and Terri

  • Ronda Scripter Posted January 11, 2021 2:23 pm

    Nena and family, Sending prayers to comfort you and give you peace. I know you all have so many great memories to remember Viola. Blessings. Ronda

  • Karen Kauffeld-Lovejoy Posted January 12, 2021 12:27 pm

    What a beautiful remembrance! Praying for you all!!!

  • Mark and Karen Miller Posted January 12, 2021 6:20 pm

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Treasure the memories.

  • Kim Lesinski Posted January 16, 2021 2:07 pm

    Nena- thinking of you during this difficult time. Although I never had the privilege of meeting your mom, I felt like I had because of your many stories and updates. Thank you for sharing her with us. Take care of yourself during this time of grief and celebration. I know you are taking care of all around you.

  • Treena Crochet Posted January 22, 2021 9:52 am

    Dear Nena, Terri, Kristina, and Fred
    The memories I have of Vi and the wonderful times spent on 38th Street stay in my heart. What a great childhood growing up next to the DeLuca family! Prayers sent for you all.

  • Tim Warthen Posted February 6, 2021 6:14 pm

    Sorry for your loss, I can’t recall your mother say a cross word to anyone. I also remember her jumping rope with us kids and doing the Chinese jump rope in the driveway. Not to mention the Monopoly that would go for hours or even days. The pisailes she stood and made for hours those are surely missed. Take care , maybe we’ll see you at the Farmers Market in the spring. Again sorry for your loss.

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