Loleta (Billie) Branco of Naples, FL, formerly of Woodside, NY passed peacefully on November 22nd, 2017 with family at her side.
She was the beloved wife of the late Anthony Branco, loving mother of Delene Branco Travella, Tony Branco, and John Branco, dear mother-in-law of Charles Travella, Susan Santoro Branco, and the late Nancy Jefts Branco; cherished grandmother of Traci Travella Bitler, Lauren Travella Fox, and Stephanie Branco; loving great-grandmother of Michelle Bitler Ramage and Catalina Fox; and dearest great-great-grandmother of Alayna Ramage. She was a devoted sister to Ila Tota and Neva Standefer, and was predeceased by sisters Freida Grant and Velda Crummet. She was a loving Aunt to numerous nieces and nephews, and had many dear cousins and friends.
Loleta was born in Almena, Kansas to George and Grace Eli (nee Colip). She was raised and went to school in Springfield, Missouri, which she considered her home before moving to New York, where she married Anthony (Tony) Branco. While her children were in school she became very active in the PTA, and held numerous leadership positions in PS 76, PS 11, Grover Cleveland HS, the Long Island City Council of Parents Clubs, and the Queensboro Federation of Parents Clubs.
She wrote for the Long Island Star Journal newspaper for many years, and held several retail positions before she and her late husband purchased a sporting goods store on Grand Avenue in Maspeth, Queens. Following his death she continued running the store as the sole proprietor of The Shooters & Anglers Sport Shop until she retired in 2003.
Visitation will be Friday, December 1st from 11:30am to 2pm at Edward D. Lynch Funeral Home 43-07 Queens Boulevard Long Island City, NY 11104
Interment will follow at 2:30 at Mt. Olivet Cemetery 65-40 Grand Ave Maspeth, NY 11378
A memorial celebration of her life will be held for friends and family in Florida following the New York service. Details will be provided when finalized.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Salvation Army or to Joanne's House at Hope Hospice 27200 Imperial Pkwy Bonita Springs, Florida 34135