Nellie Cleofe Gambini

January 20, 1929 - September 6, 2017
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Nellie Galli Gambini, of Galveston, passed away September 6th in League City, Texas

Nellie Galli was born January 20, 1929 in Galveston to Barbarina and Nello Galli. She grew up living above the grocery store her parents owned. She graduated from Ursuline Academy. On June 19, 1950 she married the love of her life, Charles Gambini, at Sacred Heart Church. They raised their four daughters in a home they built on Bayou Circle and lived in until it was under water in hurricane Ike in 2008. They shared wonderful times with many of the long-term neighbors they knew over the years.

Nellie loved her family and the many celebrations and activities they had together. She created family memories, especially the great old-fashioned, all-day beach parties with four generations of families bringing bar-b-que, hamburgers and pasta to the beach. She enjoyed crabbing and loved to go with her sister-in-law, Lillian Gambini Del Papa, in the dark hours of the early morning with a cooler of daiquiris. Nellie and Charles were always hosting extended family for holiday gatherings and celebrations.

Nellie worked with Charles in the family-owned business, Gambini’s Liquor Store, on Market St. until they sold the business and retired in 1985.

Nellie enjoyed traveling with her husband to Italy, Russia, and throughout the US. After his death, she traveled with her sister, Jennie, and sister-in-law, Ursula. She also formed a unique bond with Ursula and close friend, Gail Rider, who had a weekly lunch date that spanned more than 25 years. Nellie also had a great friend, Delores Celli, who always invited her to get out and enjoy various activities.

Closer to home, Nellie loved the annual Ravioli Making Day. Each year relatives from coast to coast come to handmake as many raviolis as we can, while catching up on news, drinking nice wine and having lunch. She loved to keep track of how many were made and comparing the total to that of previous years. This was the day on the calendar that she really looked forward to. Nellie had a passion for cooking and was known to tweak recipes until she thought they were just right. She enjoyed being in the garden and had a special interest in growing beautiful hibiscus.

She is preceded in death by her parents, Nello & Barberina Galli; brother, Joe Galli; and sister, Jennie Keith. She is also preceded in death by her loving husband, Charles Gambini.

She is survived by her children: Laura Blocker, M.D. and husband, Mark Seal, of Aspen, CO; Diane Gambini-Linke and husband, John, of Volcano CA; Antonette Gambini & husband, Tom Semple, of Friendswood; and Carla Ryan and husband, Tim, of Houston; five grandchildren: Brandon Blocker, Kelly and Colleen Ryan, Alana and Alexandra Semple; great grandson, Jack Blocker; and many loving nieces and nephews.

The family would like to thank the residents and staff of Orchard Park Victory Lakes for their friendship and love they shared with Nellie.

Nellie’s family will receive visitors beginning at 5:00 pm, Tuesday, September 12, at Malloy & Son Funeral Home. A rosary will begin at 6:00pm.

Funeral mass will begin at 10:00 am, Wednesday, September 13, at St. Patrick Catholic Church. Interment will follow at Calvary Mausoleum.

Memorials may be sent to Friends of Moody Gardens, St. Vincent’s House, O’Connell College Preparatory Annual Fund or the charity of your choice.

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Service Schedule

Visitation Information

Date: Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Time: 5:00 pm

Malloy & Son Funeral Home


3028 Broadway
Galveston, TX 77550

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Rosary at 6:00 PM

Service Information

Date: Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Time: 10:00 am

St. Patrick Catholic Church


1010 35th St. & Broadway
Galveston, TX 77550

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Cemetery Information

Date: Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Time: 11:15 am

Calvary Catholic Cemetery


2506 65th Street, Galveston, TX, 77551

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Timeline for Nellie Cleofe Gambini

Born: January 20, 1929
Died: September 6, 2017

Condolences for Nellie Cleofe Gambini

Malloy Funerals & Cremations

Our thoughts remain with you and your family.  We are honored by the trust and confidence you have placed in us during this difficult time.

—The Staff of Malloy Funerals & Cremations



Pamela Wilson posted on 9/11/17

Toni, So very sorry for your loss. It is tragic anytime that you lose your mother, but this on top of your home disaster is traumatic. Please know that your PACU family is thinking of you, praying for you and are genuinely concerned about you. We think you are wonderful!! :) Let us know if we can assist you in any way. Love, Pamela


Jackie Rogers posted on 9/9/17

A very special living and kind lady. I only knew you a short time but truly came to love you. It was an honor and my pleasure tho takes care of you.. may you rest in peace and fly with the angels... Jackie Rogers Wellness Director Orchard Park at Victory Lakes


Lou Ann Hollis posted on 9/9/17

I will miss my Aunt Nellie! She always treated me as the 5th daughter. A lot of my best memories include her and Uncle Charles. I know they are together again. Love you and thanks for the memories!