Catherine Barbara Cardinalli Stewart passed away on April 19, 2019 at her home in Pebble Beach, California. Catherine was born in Antioch, California to Salvatore Cardinalli and Frances Davi Cardinalli on April 23, 1938.
Catherine embraced life with a positive light and encouraging attitude. She had a distinguished 39-year career as a teacher with the North Monterey County Unified School District. She had a calling for helping others, especially children. Catherine was a faculty member in the teacher education program, serving as a Professor with National University. She taught Catechism during the 1970’s and then again recently, as the Catechism teacher for her granddaughter’s first holy communion. Catherine enjoyed making donations of homemade food and sweets for the Carmelite Sisters in Carmel. In the mid 1950’s Catherine supported and assisted with the development of ‘the pink ladies’ volunteer organization that has now expanded to over 450 volunteers as the auxiliary of the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula. Catherine developed curriculum programs and helped to open California’s first Head Start which focuses on building a strong foundation for early childhood education. Her career helping others began via working for the City of Monterey as a recreation program leader. Recently, Catherine enjoyed archiving Sicilian family history and recipes. Catherine was so proud to bake with her grandchildren the Sicilian “S” cookies earning a 1st place blue ribbon from the Monterey County Fair.
Catherine was proud of her parochial education from San Carlos Elementary School and Junipero Memorial High School. She held several degrees including; Association of Arts from Monterey Peninsula College, Bachelor of Arts from San Jose State University and a Master of Arts.
Catherine was a member of the Board of Directors of the Monterey Civic Club. Catherine enjoyed a special blessing and private audience with Pope Francis with exclusive Vatican access as she was a proud champion of archiving history as a Patron of the Arts for the Vatican Museum. She was a member of the Spanish Bay Club, Festa Italia and the Italian Catholic Federation as well as a proud member of the San Carlos School Alumni Association and Docent Association of Carmel Mission.
Catherine enjoyed connecting with family and friends by telling funny stories and sharing positive words of encouragement to those around her. She loved to read, stay up late, watch tv, and enjoy a classic martini with extra olives. She loved to blast Donna Summer music and dance surrounded by her grandkids. Catherine was proud to be a key organizer and volunteer to the first groundbreaking Monterey International Pop Festival, held at the Monterey Fairgrounds, with all revenues supporting charity. This became an iconic historic event, providing a template to future rock festivals such as Woodstock.
Catherine is preceded to heaven by her husband Archie Stewart, father Salvatore Cardinalli, mother Frances Davi Cardinalli and sister Frances Cardinalli. Catherine is survived by her brother Vince Cardinalli, daughter Maxine (Eric) Carlson, daughter Dr. Francine Ann Stewart (David Rodriquez) and grandchildren, Sophia Isabella Carlson, Davey Vincent Stewart Rodriguez and Catherine Ann Stewart Rodriguez.
Family and friends are invited to a celebration of Catherine’s life at the San Carlos Hall via a pre-Rosary reception on Wednesday, May 8 at 4:00pm. There will be refreshments and the sharing of fond memories of Catherine prior to the Rosary service. The Rosary will be immediately following the reception, at 5:00pm, across the street at the San Carlos Church, 500 Church Street, Monterey, CA. Catherine found guidance in her faith, saying the Rosary every day and would love to share the spiritual healing of prayer with family and friends. Catherine chose to have a private family burial.
Should family or friends desire, memorial contributions in Catherine’s honor can be made to Bridge Hospice, 601 East Romie Lane Suite #4, Salinas, CA 93901 or to The Sisters of the Carmelite Monastery of Carmel, 27601 Highway 1, Carmel, CA 93923.
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May 8, 2019
San Carlos Hall
500 Church St.
Monterey, CA 93940