Salvatore Bellavia

Obituary of Salvatore R. Bellavia

Salvatore R. “Sam” Bellavia of Temecula, CA passed away on Friday, April 2, 2021 at Inland Valley Medical Center in Wildomar, CA after suffering a massive stroke from which he never recovered.  Sam was born on August 2, 1939 in Detroit, Michigan to Giovanni Bellavia and Gaetana Mignemi who were both immigrants from Italy.  He was the youngest of three boys.

When he was 16, his family moved to Riverside, CA where he graduated from Riverside High School in 1957.  Upon graduation he went to became a barber. He was drafted into the Army in 1963.  He served in Korea, assigned to an office where he took an interest in business. After his discharge he attended Riverside City College and later transferred to San Diego State where he made the Dean’s List and received a Bachelor of Science in Business. He then earned his Certified Public Accounting certification.

He married Gloria J. Haigh on March 6, 1971 at a chapel in Anaheim, CA. They honeymooned at the Coronado Hotel in San Diego. Their car was still decorated when they went to Jai Alai in Tijuana, MX. They decided to remove the marbles in the hubcaps before crossing the border and discovered that the hubcaps were stolen.

They had two boys, Dominic and Anthony and have three grandchildren, Angelica, Dominic, Jr. and Marley. They lived for many years in Diamond Bar, CA where Sam was involved in Kiwanis, serving as President in 1984.  He coached soccer for his son’s teams and went on to compete in the state championship. 

He started his CPA firm in Tustin in 1988 and moved to Yorba Linda. He was an early riser, and often began working at 3 a.m. On one occasion he surprised the office janitor! Gloria worked with him until his retirement in 2011. Sunday dinner was an Italian tradition, followed by playing the card game of 31. He played poker monthly with his Italian friends.

In 2012 Sam and Gloria moved to Temecula.  They loved the area and enjoyed tribute concerts at Pala Casino and nearby wine country and casinos. Sam had a blackjack “system” for playing and a betting strategy. They celebrated many holidays and special occasions with their dear friends and had many interesting conversations by the barbeque,

Everyone enjoyed Sam’s company and contribution to the conversation. Sam’s favorite toast, which always got a laugh, was “You know what they say at the post office? Here’s looking up your address.”

Sam was preceded by his parents and brother, John Bellavia.  He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Gloria Bellavia, sons Dominic Bellavia of Temecula, CA and Anthony “Tony” Bellavia of Ben Lomand, CA, grandchildren Angelica Bellavia of Visalia, CA , Dominic Jr. of Temecula, CA,  Marley Bellavia of Santa Cruz, CA, brother Al Bellavia of Riverside, CA., and many nieces and nephews including  his nieces Melissa Clark of Riverside and Krysti Bellavia of Riverside.

A graveside service will be held on May 5, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. at Riverside National Cemetery, 22495 Van Buren Boulevard, Riverside, Ca.  A luncheon will follow at the family home at 42291 Regents Hill Circle, Temecula, CA 92592.

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Internment at RNC

10:00 am - 11:00 am
Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Riverside National Cemetery
22495 Van Buren Boulevard
Riverside, California, United States
Riverside National Cemetery
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