Marty Russo

Marty Russo

January 17, 1936 - February 04, 2009

Marty Russo

January 17, 1936 - February 04, 2009


Martin Gregory Russo

Martin Gregory ‘Marty’ Russo passed away on February 4, 2009. He was born in New York City on January 17th, 1936 to Marguerite Jean and John Russo. He spent his childhood in Hillsdale, NJ until he left for the Carolinas, California, Japan and Korea where he served in the US Marine Corps. Marty studied Art at The New York Phoenix School of Design, Pratt Institute NYNY, Art Center College of Design, Los Angeles and graduated from CSU Fullerton with a BA in Geography.

In September 1958, he departed New Jersey on his honeymoon with his bride Peggy Erdman and traveled to Orange County, California where he remained to raise a family, build a career and enjoy a great community of friends. He began his drafting career with The City of Santa Ana and soon thereafter joined a small group of young people venturing to develop the planned community of Mission Viejo. He served as Director of Community Services at The Mission Viejo Company and retired after 30 years. His involvement in the community extended beyond his professional role as demonstrated by his long and enthusiastic participation in the MV Activities Committee and his residence in Mission Viejo for over 40 years. His second career was born of his passion for woodworking when he began a small enterprise designing, building, refurbishing and refinishing furniture. His woodwork gave him great joy and an outlet for his artist gifts. He returned often to New Jersey to enjoy family, dear friends and his love of the woods.

Marty was an avid Angels baseball fan, birdwatcher and fisherman. He loved Jazz, chocolate, MGD and swimming in the Pacific. Marty was a proud Marine and patriot. He was deliberate and discerning, hardworking and persistent.

Marty is survived by his wife of fifty years, Peggy; his daughters, Gail Russo-Larsson and Jill Russo Bergman and their spouses Theo and Michael respectively; his grandchildren, Nicolas, Mattias, Liliana and William; his sister Jean Hartwick; 2 nieces and 2 nephews; sisters/brothers-in law, Mary and Harry Pantoja, John and Joan Erdman. He is preceded in death by his parents and brother Donald.

A Funeral Mass will be held Wednesday, February 11, 2009 at noon at St. Killian’s Catholic Church, Mission Viejo. A Celebration of Life will follow at Lake Mission Viejo at 1:45 PM. Private interment at El Toro Memorial Park, Lake Forest. O’Connor Mortuary, Directors, 949-581-4300. Please Honor Marty’s life with a donation to The Leukemia/ Lymphoma Society or Operation Home Front.

Marty will be remembered for purposefulness, generosity and his silly grin.

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25 responses to Marty Russo

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  1. Dear Peggy, Girls and Family. We are so sad for your loss. Marty was a wonderful person and we remember many a new years eve party’s with you guys. We have some great picture’s of you two from our 50th wedding anniv. party. It was so special to have you there with us.
    We will always cherish our friendship with you.
    Love & Hugs
    Derryle & Pat

  2. Dear Peggy,
    We cannot imagine how much your dear Marty will be missed. Please know that he was loved by all who were blessed to have known him. You and Gail and Jill and their families are in our prayers as you greieve for your husband, father, and grandfather.
    Love and prayers,
    Tish and Mike

  3. We are happy to be called your friends and will miss you so much. You and your family are in out prayers always and wil love.
    Ann & Mike

  4. Don Schone says:

    Barbara said many times when they were part of the MVC Family what a “wonderful person Marty was.” She also said what a “great couple” you two were. I have to agree with her, again.
    Peggy attempt to remember the best-of-times, as do I, since the loss of my Barb nearly two years ago.

  5. Uncle Marty, what a great uncle, always with a smile and kinds words. Also, a loving brother to my dad, Donald. I know Uncle Marty meant so much to him. We were lucky to have Uncle Marty.

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