Norma Jeanne Portella

April 27, 1931 - August 30, 2011

Norma Jeanne Portella, 80, of Brighton, Colo., formerly of Jefferson City, Mo., passed away on August 30, 2011. She was born on April 27, 1931, in Jefferson City, Mo., to John Willis and Della Neeley. She attended schools in Jefferson City and then joined the U.S. Marine Corp serving primarily in the Washington DC area. She loved her time in the Marines and was very proud to serve her country. She met her future husband in the Marines and was honorably discharged as a Sergeant in May 1952 and later that same year she married Manuel V. Portella in Virginia. Jeanne and Manuel had five children, including two sets of twins. They divorced in June of 1960. Jeanne worked as a Claims Representative for the Social Security Administration for over 20 years before she retired. She loved to read any book she could get her hands on. She was crafty; making cakes, crocheting and making ceramics. Jeanne loved to travel, mostly in Europe. She once spent three months traveling in Europe by herself. She was also able to spend time in Italy, Turkey and Morocco, among other countries. Jeanne loved to sing with her sisters. She once even recorded a vinyl record with one of her sisters. Jeanne lived a very rich life. She was highly respected by those who knew her. She held on to her values and did everything she could to keep her family together, raising happy and confident children. Jeanne was a 'saint' and she will be missed. Jeanne is survived by her children: Michael Portella of Ft. Collins, Colo., Mitchell Portella of Milliken, Colo., Carlotta (Don) Barnes of Brighton, Colo., and Ricky (Charlotte) Portella of West Wendover, Nev.; sisters: Juanita Clark of Ironton, Mo., Betty Jo Willis of Jefferson City, Mo., Anna Mae Pfenenger of Grain Valley, Mo.; brother: Herbert Willis of Jefferson City, Mo.; eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by both of her parents and her son, Randy Portella. A Celebration of Life Service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, April 28, 2012, at the Union Hill Cemetery in Holts Summit, Mo. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in Jeanne's name to the Alzheimer Association, 455 Sherman Street, Suite 500, Denver, CO 80203. Arrangements are under the direction of HOUSER-MILLARD Funeral Directors, 2613 West Main Street, Jefferson City, MO 65109. (573) 636-3838. Condolences may be left for the family online at

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