Vilma was born on October 20, 1923 to Salvatore and Anna Fugarino in Union City, New Jersey. On February 16, 2020, at the age of 96, Vilma passed peacefully from this life with her daughter by her side in Milwaukie, Oregon.
The second of three children, Vilma grew up in close-knit family just outside of New York City. In 1947 while out dancing with a group of friends, Vilma met Fred Malizia. They were married in 1949 and lived in West New York, New Jersey, where son Donald and daughter Ellen were born. In 1963 they followed Fred’s job to Lebanon, Pennsylvania. A city girl at heart, Vilma had to adjust to country life...and learn to drive at age 40. She quickly made Lebanon home, becoming active in Ellen’s and Don’s schools and in her local church, Mary Gate of Heaven Catholic Church in Myerstown. She was a wonderful cook and found great joy feeding and entertaining family, friends and neighbors. She and Fred enjoyed taking trips after he retired and she especially loved her trip to Italy with her sister, Ruth. Rarely would a week go by without a game of cards, whether it be bridge, pinochle, or liverpool rummy.
Vilma lost her beloved Fred to cancer in 1992. She continued to be very close to her brother and sister, George and Ruth, who lived in New Jersey. They visited each other as often as possible and spoke on the phone nearly every day until Ruth passed in 1995 and George in 2010.
In 2012, Vilma moved to Oregon from Lebanon County, Pennsylvania to live with her daughter Ellen’s family. While it wasn’t easy to leave her home and community of almost 50 years, she was very happy to be living with family. Vilma’s granddaughters were the apple of her eye and it gave her great joy to be close to them and able to attend concerts, recitals, volleyball matches, graduations and much more. She would tell anyone within earshot how smart and talented they are: “They can do anything!”
Throughout her life Vilma was an avid reader and continued to read library ebooks set at the e-reader’s largest font after her eyes could no longer decipher large print books. Vilma was also a devotee of classic movies, staunchly of the opinion that any movie made after 1960 was just not as good. Singin’ in the Rain was her favorite.
Vilma is survived by her daughter and son-in-law Ellen Malizia and Bruce Evans of Oregon City, Oregon, by her two granddaughters Grace Evans of Brooklyn, New York and Mary Evans of Boulder, Colorado, and by her son Donald Malizia.
In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Vilma’s home library, Ledding Library of Milwaukie, Oregon. Donations can be made at www.leddingfriends.org or checks to “Friends of Ledding Library” at 10660 SE 21st Avenue, Milwaukie OR 97222. Or consider a donation to your local library.
A Mass will be celebrated in Vilma’s honor at Mary Gate of Heaven Catholic Church in Myerstown, at noon, on March 14, 2020. Interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery in Lebanon.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Vilma Malizia, please visit our floral store.
Friends of Ledding Library