Denise “Dee Dee” Vela never missed an opportunity to climb a ladder; on January 6, 2023 she climbed her final ladder to Heaven.
Dee Dee was born on November 21, 1960 and raised in Pacoima, CA. She was a proud San Fernando High Tiger. Her childhood was spent at the ball field where she quickly became a star softball pitcher while being coached by her favorite coach, her father. She had an outstanding softball career, even receiving a state softball award from Billie Jean King. In 1985 Dee Dee spread her wings and moved to New York. She started working as a tech at Cannon where she then worked her way up to a Branch Manager in Manhattan. LA will always be her home but the East Coast quickly became her heart when she met the love of her life, Tricia in 1986. Dee and Tricia moved to Harrington Park in 1995 where they planted roots, Dee working at Optimum and Tricia running her Bakery; then later survived running a restaurant together.
Dee loved many things, but her top loves were softball, Barbra Striesand, Adele, her culture, her Coca-Cola and cigarettes, her garden, her truck, Harry Potter, and reading books by her favorite authors. Her joy came from her many life-long friends and all her nieces and nephews.
Dee Dee was predeceased by her mother and father, Frank M. and Estella Vela and her brothers, Frank C. and Bill Vela. She is survived by her partner Tricia, her beloved cats, Katniss and PrimRose, a whole crew of nieces, nephews, great-nieces & nephews, great-great nieces & nephews and countless friends.
Services in New Jersey will be held at Barrett Leber Funeral Home, 148 Dean Dr., Tenafly, NJ on January 14th from 12-2pm; with formal memorial beginning at 1p. A Repast to follow at the Tenafly Elks Lodge. (Tenafly, NJ No. 2271, 20 Franklin St., Tenafly, NJ 07670)