Lillian Faralla - Coronado Eagle & Journal | Coronado News | Coronado Island News: Obituaries

Lillian Faralla

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Posted: Sunday, October 20, 2019 12:49 pm

She was in a league of her own.

Lillian Faralla passed away on July 26, 2019, three days before her 95th birthday.

Our Aunt Lil was one of a kind. Born in Brooklyn N.Y in 1924. Her family moved to Los Angles in 1935 where her father managed the Bank of America. They moved to San Pedro the next year. After high school she worked as “Rosie the Riveter.” Then In 1942 she joined the Coast Guard and became a boatswain’s mate 2nd class.

After leaving the service she received a call from the All American Girls Professional Baseball League. P.K. Wrigley sent her a train ticket to Wrigley field, where she was sent to play ball for the Peoria Redwings. She was a pitcher who once pitched a 19 inning game. She also played for the Fort Wayne Daises, and South Bend Blue Sox. Her last year she was the pitcher for the South Bend Blue Sox where she pitched two no hitters and almost a perfect game. The first baseman dropped the ball on the last out. They won the championship that year. She retired in 1951.

When they filmed the movie “A League of Their Own” she was there and met Penny Marshall, Rosie O’Donnell and Madonna. She also went to Cooperstown when she and the rest of the ladies were inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

After she played baseball she was one of the first women to become an L.A. County deputy sheriff. She worked in the area of transportation and would be with the sequestered female jurors during long trials. She took care of both jurors for the Sirhan, Sirhan, and Charles Manson trials.

When she retired she spent her summers in Donner lake California and winters in the Coronado Cays. In 2017 at the age of 92, she was interviewed by the Coronado Times. Her interview is online.

On May 4, Aunt Lil, Lillian Faralla was presented with a certificate by the Women’s Museum of California “in honor of a life that exemplifies the Museum’s motto of:

‘Preserving the past.....Inspiring the future.’”

Her family and friends will miss ‘Diamond Lil’ very much. She was always up for a good time.

She is survived by her brother Aldo (Eva) Faralla; nieces and nephews Jack (Lessa) Wolfe, Stephanie (Ned) Hoffman, Darryl (Marta) Wolfe, Justine (Stefan) Freeman, and Bryan Hoffman; grand nieces and nephews Allison, Charlsie, and Scout Wolfe, and Alex and Lucas Wolfe; great grand niece and nephews Jacquelyn Freeman and Parker Freeman. (Parker especially shares her love of baseball).

Coronado lost a great baseball player but somewhere, in a cornfield outside of South Bend, a team has gained a great veteran pitcher.