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Obituaries » Mary Erla

Mary Erla

February 9, 2018


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ERLA, Mary Jane (“Jain”) Passed away on Friday, February 9, 2018, with her husband, John at her side, following a stroke and complications from viral pneumonia. She was born on March 29, 1950 in Fresno, California, the second of four children born to Joseph and Margaret Golembeski. She married John in January1969 in Fullerton, California. Books were Jain’s lifelong passion and she devoted herself to public library service in various capacities, but she especially loved her work as a children’s librarian in Pasadena and Sonoma County. She earned her AA degree at Fullerton Junior College in 1976, her BA at Fullerton State in 1979, and her Masters in Library Science at USC in 1980. She began her library career in 1976, at Beckman Labs as a technical Library Aide. Upon her graduation in 1980, she went to work for Pasadena Public Library. After moving north, Jain joined the staff of the Sonoma County Library in 1986, where she became the consummate children’s Librarian, and was promoted to Branch Manager at two branches before retiring in 2002. Active in her union (SEIU), Jain served as a steward and on negotiation and contract committees–a tireless advocate for her co-workers and improved library services. In retirement, Jain was an active member of the Russian River Friends of the Library in Guerneville, managing the Friends’ annual Readers’ Theater group and helping coordinate the annual book sales. Jain loved the Oakland A’s but she also spent every birthday, glued to the tv during college basketball’s March Madness games. Preceded in death by her parents and her brother, Gus, she is survived by her husband John Erla, and sisters Susan Taylor and Ann Golembeski. Interment will take place in a private ceremony in Guerneville. A Celebration of Life will be held on Sunday, February 25, from Noon to 6 p.m. at the Monte Rio Community Center. Donations in Jain’s memory may be made to the Russian River Friends of the Library or any children’s’ library program.