Bruno Giorgio Martinelli, age 74, passed away at his home in Paso Robles on November 15, 2023. He was born on January 13, 1949, in the Bucolic town of Posina, located at the foot of the enchanting Dolomites in Northern Italy. He landed with his sister Marie at the San Francisco Airport on December 24, 1960, and settled in the Templeton Hills, where the family worked the cherry orchard and the Martinelli Vineyard. He attended Templeton Unified and excelled at all sports, quickly demonstrating his athletic abilities and making volleyball and basketball his passions. Winning the 1968 CIF Basketball Championship for the Templeton Eagles HS
Following his graduation from Templeton High, he served honorably in the U. S. Navy, showcasing his commitment to our country. He served his boot camp time in San Diego, CA, and given his athletic abilities, it did not take him long to put together a group of competitive basketball players, allowing him to graduate with the grade of Chief Petty Officer. Upon completing boot camp, his unit was assigned the prestigious task of Flying the Colors in the Mediterranean. An interpreter was needed for the assignment, and Bruno, fluent in English and Italian, was selected as the official interpreter for the voyage. This assignment brought him prestigious assignments as he commingled with commanders, captains, admirals, generals, and the elite of the Italian Military and political societies. What a great way to serve his country, the United States of America! This trip also gave him the opportunity to visit his family members in Italy and buy his lovely bride-to-be, Debbie Martin, her engagement ring.
During one of his leaves, he met the love of his life, Debbie Martin, “it was love at first sight.” They were married on May 27, 1972, and were blessed with their two wonderful children, George and Deanna
Back home, Bruno continued to help his Mother, Rina Martinelli (known by all as Mamma), with the cultivation of cherries and grapes. This was also the time when he began his career as a roustabout for Mobile, but neither time, family, nor work could stand in the way of his love and passion for volleyball. For over 45 years, he coached the girl’s volleyball teams at Templeton High School and Paso Robles High School. Coaching three (3) generations of girls, many of whom are now grandmothers, all remember him with admiration and gratitude. When he wasn’t coaching, he played for the Paso Robles Recreation Team.
Bruno is survived by his adoring family. His wife, Debbie, son George, daughter Deanna, granddaughter Jadyn, and grandson Chase. Also missing him are his sisters Marie and Silvana and extended family in Italy, Arkansas, and Arizona. On January 13, 2024, at 12:30 pm, A Celebration of Life will be held at the American Legion Hall on Main Street in Templeton, CA.
All those who adored and loved him are invited to come and remember and celebrate the many wonderful memories created with him in his lifetime.
Bring your favorite dish!! Please RSVP to Debbie at 805-674-1669
In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests that donations be made to the Paso Robles REC Foundation in honor of Bruno’s thirty-five years of devoted service to coaching youth in Paso Robles. The REC Foundation, which Bruno passionately supported, plays a vital role in providing recreational and enrichment opportunities for young people in our community.
Donations can be made online at Click Here or mailed to the Rec Foundation at 600 Nickerson Drive, Paso Robles, Ca. 93446. Please include a note specifying that the donation is in memory of Bruno Martinelli.