Martha Celestine, who worked in food service at Saint Mary's College of California for 23 years, died of an apparent heart attack on campus early this morning. She was 62 years old.
At a prayer service this afternoon, Mrs. Celestine was remembered as a dedicated employee who took great pride in her work.
"Before a meal we often pray in thanksgiving for the people, for the hands that make our food," said Brother Ronald Gallagher, president of Saint Mary's College. "Martha's passing provides us with an opportunity to remember the hard-working individuals who nourish us."
Mrs. Celestine began working in 1984 as a cook and cashier in the school dining hall, then known as the Brickpile. In 1999, she became a cashier and supervisor in Cafe Louis before moving to Oliver Hall last year to work as a prep cook.
"She cared about what she did and took a lot of pride in it," said Matt Carroll, general manager of Sodexho Food Services. "She was a very special person."
Mrs. Celestine, who was a Richmond resident, is survived by her husband, Clarence, who also works as a cook in Oliver Hall, as well as her five children.
-- By Debra Holtz
Office of College Communications
Rose Manor Funeral Services
8331 MacDonald Avenue
Richmond, CA 94805
Visitation: Tuesday, March 4 5-8 p.m.
Funeral: Wednesday, March 5 at 11 a.m.