Friends of Enchanted Meadow
About Us

Albert Catallini

If you were to measure a person's character on a scale of one to ten, Albert Cattalini nears ten.

He was frugal with resources, a natural recycler. Generous, humorous, inciteful, intelligent, humble and kind. One of his mottos was: always leave a place better than you found it.

He was a first generation Italian-American, born near San Francisco on 10-10-10. His mother died early in his life. He and his siblings lived in orphanages in Marin and Mendocino counties until his father found a woman willing to marry a widower with six children.

One quirk of note was he could write identical script with both hands at the same time in opposite directions. His grandaughter once brought him to class for SHOW & TELL where he demonstrated his skills.

Al's older brother, Ernie, worked as A.P. Gianini's errand boy, when B of A was originally Bank of Italy, later as a B of A employee, Ernie saw promise in his younger brother and apportioned his earnings to finance Al's college education.

Al graduated from Saint Mary's College in Moraga, CA, in 1936 with a degree in english literature, and later married his sweetheart, Marie from Yountville, Ca. In anticipation for the San Francisco World's Fair, he lobbied the city to plant trees. He enlisted into the United States Coast Guard Reserve during World War II and remained a reservist for many years.

He always wanted to write, but also wanted a large family. He chose working for B of A as his profession, because the paydays were reliable and the pinochle tournaments legendary. He and Marie raised seven children, and throughout his life, his love of family and mother nature was paramount. His fascination with fungi was fueled during frequent visits to his mother-in-law's vineyards, and on hikes to nearby Napa River.

In his later years he and his family moved to Little River, Ca. He enjoyed golf and shot his age at seventy-five and became a weekly newspaper columnist for The Mendocino Beacon writing Golf Notes.

A didactic mycologist, he studied mushrooms and shared his knowledge and specimens with anyone who was interested, some notables: mushroom dye writer, Miriam Rice, photographer Taylor Lockwood and the San Francisco Mycological Society.
A photo of Al wearing his mushroom hat is seen in David Arora's book, "All The Rain Promises and More....."

He loved to walk in the forest, he loved his friends, he loved being host. Many a friend recall stopping by his house and being offered a glass of wine almost any time of day from a gallon jug kept near his chair under the kitchen table. If you dropped by before nine a.m., you were offered a shot brandy in a cup of coffee.

Al didn't believe in cutting down living things. He was an advocate of using a walking stick whenever hiking. He made many walking sticks from dead wood he found in the forest and gave them away to people. Each stick was unique and identified with little tags he made from recycled paper, indicating the latin and common name of the species used.

Al left us suddenly, dying in his sleep Labor Day morning, 1992, while his family was visiting. Over twenty-five relatives, including his older brother Ernie, gathered around his bed as the priest performed the Last Rites. Burning incense wafted sweetly. The presence of grace serpentined the grieving assembly. Ernie watchful of Al in life and death, prayed. The brother he loved for a lifetime had passed.

 Your generosity will protect the aquatic habitat and nurture population growth
of the Coho Salmon, a federal listed Endangered species.
Thank you.



Mail your contribution, which is tax deductible to:
Friends of Enchanted Meadow / P.O. Box 271 - Little River, CA 95456

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