Thursday, May 21, 2009

De Luca Family: Death Records

I have not forgotten about my favorite Italian family. I've just been incredibly busy with graduations and family gatherings, and I got such a great picture of my great-great-grandfather Pemberton that it warranted interrupting the De Luca series...LOL! I've been waiting on a death record to come in for Peter Louis De Luca, Sr., but I still have the genealogy mailbox blues, so I've decided to go ahead without it.

The previous post in this series showed the Peter and Clara De Luca family in the 1930 US Census in Phelps County, Missouri. They were living there with their three youngest children, Anna, Peter Jr., and Lena. We also saw their older daughters, Mary and Rose, living in St. Louis with Mary's husband and young daughter.

This post is primarily about the De Luca family death records I've collected. As one can see, the De Luca family eventually settled in southern California, which is where much of the family remains today. The first one is for Clementina "Clara" Trillo De Luca. I first found her date of death from the California death index at

Name: Clementi M Deluca
Social Security #: 367-26-8931
Birth Date: 9 Jan 1886
Birthplace: Italy
Death Date: 28 Jun 1967
Death Place: Los Angeles
Mother's Maiden Name: Trello

This gave me the date and county of death, which I used to order the death certificate. The unusual thing about this entry is that it gives a mother's maiden name but no father's surname.

Name: Clementina DeLuca
Date of death: 28 Jun 1967
Time of death: 5:07 AM
Sex: Female
Race: Cauc
Birthplace: Italy
Date of birth: 9 Jan 1886
Age: 81
Name and birthplace of father: Pietro DeLuca, Italy
Maiden name and birthplace of mother: Matilda Trello, Italy
Citizenship: USA
SSN: 367-26-8931
Occupation: Housewife
Number of years in occupation: 64
Industry: Own Home
Ever in armed forces: no
Marital Status: Widowed
Place of death: Rio Hondo Hospital, 8400 Telegraph Road, Downey, Los Angeles County
Length of stay in county of death: 20 years
Length of stay in California: 20 years
Residence: 5433 S. Rosemead Blvd, Pico Rivera, Los Angeles, California
Informant: Mrs. Elizabeth Menchini
Date of burial: 30 Jun 1967
Place of burial: Holy Cross Cemetery
Funeral home: Pico Rivera Funeral Home
Cause of death: Acute pancreatitis
Other secondary conditions: Cholelithiasis
When I got the death certificate, I realized why Clementina's father's surname was not listed in the index at On the actual death certificate, her father is listed as Pietro DeLuca. However, I knew that was her husband and not her father, and I presume that the indexer at realized this as well. So then I wondered if Matilda Trello was truly her mother's maiden name, or if that was her own name. I had learned from Steve Zulpo that Clementina's full maiden name was actually Clementina Matilda Trillo. I have seen this happen before: the informant gives her own parent's names instead of the parents of the deceased. I believe this is what Elizabeth (De Luca) Menchini did on her mother's death certificate.

So, I ordered the death certificate of her son, Peter Louis De Luca, Jr., my brother-in-law's grandfather. I figured this would help in confirming her own maiden name as Trillo/Trello.

Name of decedent: Peter Louis De Luca
Date of birth: 12/08/1916
Age: 86
Sex: M
Birth State: Missouri
SSN: 497-10-5541
Ever in U.S. Armed Forces: no
Marital Status: Married
Date of death: 8/10/2003
Hour: 2015
Education: HS Graduate
Decedent's Race: White
Was decdent Spanish/Hispanic/Latino: no
Usual occupation: Manufacturer
Kind of business: Defense products
Years in occupation: 35
Decedent's residence: 43500 Old Harbor Drive, Bermuda Dunes, Riverside, California 92201
Years in county: 35
Informant's Name: [removed to protect privacy of living individuals]
Informant's Address: [removed to protect privacy of living individuals]
Name of surviving spouse: [first name removed to protect privacy] Hartman
Name of father: Peter Louis De Luca
Birthplace: Italy
Maiden Name of Mother: Clementina Matilda Trillo
Birthplace: Italy
Disposition Date: 08/18/2003
Place of final disposition: Palm Springs Mausoleum, 59901 East Ramon Road, Cathedral City, CA 92234
Type of disposition: Burial
Name of funeral establishment: Palm Springs Mortuary, Cathedral City
Place of death: Residence, 43500 Old Harbor Drive, Bermuda Dunes, Riverside
Cause of death: End stage Alzheimer's Disease
This stated that Clementina's maiden name was in fact Trillo, and that this was not her mother's maiden name.

I also found the following on Peter in the California death index at

Name: Peter L Deluca
Social Security #: 0
Birth Date: 10 Oct 1855
Birthplace: Other Country
Death Date: 2 Aug 1945
Death Place: Los Angeles
Mother's Maiden Name: Yenata
Father's Surname: Deluca

I'm pretty sure that birth date of 1855 is incorrect. From census records and family sources, it appears that he was born in 1877 or 1878. This gives a maiden name for Peter's mother: YENATA. I've taken a look around Louise Shapcott's Surnames of Atina page and determined that this must be a misspelling of IANNOTA. From Peter's death date and the 1930 US Census record, it looks like the Peter and Clara settled in southern California sometime between 1930 and 1945. From this index entry, it appears that he did not have a social security number, or that it wasn't given on his death record.

When Peter's death record arrives, I will do another post here. I have also sent off for Clementina's social security application. Stay tuned!

Links to other posts in this series:

De Luca Family: Intro
De Luca Family: Immigration Records
De Luca Family: 1910 US Census
De Luca Family: WWI Draft Registration
De Luca Family: 1920 US Census
De Luca Family: 1930 US Census


  1. Great research, Jennifer! I'll stay tuned.

  2. Love your blog! Got some great ideas for trying my own. Wonderful work!

  3. Hi, Judy and Nina! Thanks for your wonderful compliments! Glad you guys are enjoying the blog.