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Antonette Marie Franzia
Private graveside services were held in Stockton on Oct. 19 for Antonette Marie Franzia, 104, of Modesto. She died on Oct. 11, 2010.

She was one of the last remaining survivors of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake. Mrs. Franzia was also the wife and mother of prominent California winemakers: her husband, John Franzia Sr., who died in 1998, co-founded Franzia Brothers Winery in Ripon; her son, John Franzia, Jr., is co-owner of Ceres-based Bronco Wine Co.

Born Dec. 10, 1905, in San Francisco, Mrs. Franzia lived in Ripon from 1926 until the 1970s when she moved to Stockton before eventually settling in Modesto in the 1990s. Antonette was born to Stephen Ferrea, and his wife Teresa, who was a first generation Italian immigrant. She often told the story of how the only things that her family rescued during the earthquake were a mattress and Antonette. When she was 12, the Ferrea family moved to Stockton where she graduated from Humphreys College and worked briefly as a secretary until her marriage in 1926 to John Franzia, Sr., also a child of first generation Italian immigrants. The Franzia home was surrounded by grape vines overseen by Antonette's husband, but the kitchen was her domain. She was a perpetual motion machine, canning homegrown fruits and vegetables, making pies, tending the trees, shrubs and flowers that stood as testimony to her green thumb and ending the evenings by sewing, crocheting, tatting, knitting and embroidering.

She leaves behind three children, John Franzia, Jr., of Escalon, Barbara Schriber Cox of Clarkston, Wash., and Norma Roig of Ripon; and 10 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by son Richard Franzia in 1946.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to a charity of choice.

-Ceres Courier/ October 27, 2010