Obituary of Edith Ziliotto
Our dear Nona, Edith (Iride Vanoli Acquistapace) Ziliotto passed away peacefully on December 12, 2023 at the age of 93 with family by her side.
Edith was born on November 11, 1930 in Gera Lario, Como Italy to Lucia and Francesco Vanoli. Edith was one of four children who grew up with a strong work ethic. At a young age it was her responsibility to climb the mountain and tend to the cows along with other chores. That work ethic never left her as she strived for more. She immigrated to the US in 1948 to build a better life for her and her family. She ended up in Arroyo Grande, Ca where she married her first husband, Gus Acquistapace. There she worked on a ranch and helped clean houses to gain money to send back to her family in Italy. She and her husband Gus wanted to move to Santa Barbara to raise their son, Luigi Frank Acquistapace.
During her time in Santa Barbara, Edith became a fearless entrepreneur, venturing into different businesses. Even opening one in her 80’s. Edith fell in love with Santa Barabara and never wanted to leave. She would say, “what for”? It reminded her of Italy. Santa Barbara is where she married her second husband, Valentino Ziliotto and they adopted one son, Valentino Ziliotto Jr. Her passions were serving her community, tending to her garden and Sunday mass. Edith was a force of nature who loved being surrounded by people. She was an incredible bright light, who made others’ lives better. Interacting with the community, her customers, is what she adored most. She did not see it as work, but as getting to know an extended family. She enjoyed hearing their stories and watching their lives flourish.
Edith was the matriarch of our family. She built so much in Santa Barbara, but mostly a life for her family, even sending for her mother and siblings in the 1970’s. She was truly a kind and generous soul who always wanted to help others, whether that meant feeding you, giving you a job or a place to stay.
Some of you knew her as Gus’s bar in Goleta, the woman behind the register at The Italian Grocery, or the face of Nona’s Italian Deli. Others knew her as their landlord. We knew her as our energetic hardworking grandmother. She was a true legend, and her legacy will live on in the hearts of many.
Edith is survived by her son, Valentino Jr.; six grandchildren: Marli, Michelle, Diego, Mateo, Isabella and Valentina; two great-grandchildren: Aria and Aubree; and two great-great grandchildren: Maddisyn and Reata. She is proceeded in death by her parents; Lucia and Francesco; three siblings: Angelo Vanoli, Tino Vanoli and Anna Sciain; her son, Luigi Acquistapace and great granddaughter, Jayli Acquistapace.
We can still hear her words “Ti voglio bene” (I love you) in our hearts. Please join us in celebrating our beloved Edith. Rosary to be held at McDermott-Crockett chapel, January 4th at 7pm. Funeral Service at the Santa Barbara Mission January 5th at 11am with burial to follow at Calvary cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please donate to the charity of your choice.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Edith Ziliotto, please visit Tribute Store