Louella Elizabeth Harrington
June 18, 1923-Sept. 28, 2021
Palo Alto, California
Louella “Lou” E. Harrington June 15, 1923 – September 28, 2021
Lou Harrington, long time resident of Menlo Park, passed away peacefully on September 28, 2021 at the age of 98. She was born in Butte, Montana to William and Helen LaVelle. William, “Billy” LaVelle was a self-made entrepreneur who ran a fleet of trucks that supplied dynamite to the dozens of copper mines in Butte. Helen was a piano teacher and President of the Montana Music Association. From her mother Lou received a life long love of music. It was a quiet, but solid family upbringing with siblings Willa Marie, Helen Claire, Bill, and Tom. Her Butte horizons expanded when she enrolled at Montana State College in Bozeman, Montana, where she graduated with a degree in Home Economics. In the early 40s the world as consumed by World War II. Although clearly aware of the momentous challenges the world was enmeshed in, news of the war was not in the forefront of the kids at Montana State. What changed Mom’s life forever though, was her meeting James “Jim” Harrington. He turned out to be the love of her life and they were married in 1945, just before Jim shipped off to South Korea as part of the U.S. occupation force just after the war ended. Lou returned to Butte to await for Jim’s return.
Upon his return to the U.S. Jim was fortunate to land a job with Pan American World Airways and the couple moved to the San Francisco Bay Area. From there they traveled the world, touching Europe, Asia, Africass, South America and he Middle East.
In Menlo Park, CA, their famly grew to include their children William, Joanne, Daniel,Beth, and Claire. Besides Jimmy they were the true love of her life. The most giving, generous and loving devotion to her kids was her ultimate joy and accomplishment.
Other passions also surfaced. She and Jim were very devot Catholics. They attended daily Mass. They put their faith to practical use with long service feeding our underprivileged brothers and sisters at Padau Dining Room in Redwood City and with the St. Vincent de Paul Society.
There was some playtime too of course. She and Jim were in love with Hawaii and practically made Kailua-Kona on the Big Island a second home, returning there year after year. A full life indeed!
Lou is survived by her children Bill, Joanne, Dan (Debra), Beth, and Claire. She is also survived by grandchildren Zeb (Lacey) Omeara (Nick), Ashley (Jon), and Michelle(Richard); as well as great grandchildren Abigail, Madison, Hudson, Greyson, Harper, and Jack.
Funeral arrangements by Spangler Mortuaries, 799 Castro St., Mountain View CA 94041.
A Celebration of Life will be held at The Church of the Nativity, 210 Oak Grove Ave., Menlo Park CA 9025. Time and date are pending.