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Jerome's Furniture matriarch Esther Navarra dies at 92

SAN DIEGO — Esther Navarra, a co-founder of San Diego-based Top 100 company Jerome's Furniture with her husband, Vincent Navarra, has died at age 92.

Navarra, who died at her home March 15 surrounded by family and friends, would have turned 93 this Wednesday, March 21. A memorial mass and celebration of her life will be held that day at 10 a.m. in St. Vincent's Church, 4080 Hawk St., San Diego, Calif. 92103.

She was born in 1919 in San Diego, the daughter of Sicilian immigrants. She was renowned for her Italian cooking and at her 90th birthday party, provided the recipes and memories for what became the cookbook, "Olives on the Table: Memories from a Sicilian Kitchen."

According to an obituary on the U-T San Diego website, Esther and Vincent Navarra established a furniture business, then called Strep's Warehouse, in 1954 in downtown San Diego. They changed the name to Jerome's in the late 1960s to honor their son. Esther Navarra did the accounting for the business.

She is survived by her son, Jerome Navarra; daughters Adeline Williams and Ann Navarra a sister, Antoinette Zolezzi; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by her husband in 1989.

Her family suggests that donations be made in her name to San Diego Hospice.

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