Isolina (Betty) Consilvio was born to Antonio D’Ercoli and Angela Consilvio on Dec. 27, 1925 in Castiglione Messer Marino, Italy into a family of eight children. She spent her younger years in Castiglioni, then lived with an aunt and uncle near Rome while working as a nanny. At age 14, she was injured by allied bombs and taken by Nazi soldiers to a labor camp where she was among many non-Jews captured to work for the Nazi army. She worked in a post office, sewing shop, kitchen and vegetable garden. She was held at Dachau Concentration Camp and Innsbruck, Austria until approximately age 19.
She met her future husband, Jim Brown, at a USO dance in Livorno, Italy in 1948 while Jim was serving off-shore in the rank of Staff Sgt. in the United States Marine Corps. A few months later Betty arrived in America at Ellis Island. She had fond memories of her time on Ellis Island due to the sense of community felt among the immigrants from around the world. To no avail, Jim made numerous attempts to get her released from Ellis Island. There were paperwork problems that were finally resolved three months later and on Dec. 28, 1948 Betty traveled to Camp Lejeune, NC and was finally re-united with Jim. That same afternoon, they were informed by an immigration officer that due to the expiration of the War Bride Act Betty would be deported to Italy if they were not married by midnight. They were married by a Justice of the Peace at a taxi cab stand in Jacksonville, NC at approximately 11 p.m. The immigration officer even made them a wedding cake late that evening.
In 1950, Jim and Betty eventually settled on the farm in Mallard where they still live today. To this union four children were born: Nancy, Jerry, Barb and Diana. Betty worked as a housewife on the farm and enjoyed cooking for her family and friends, golfing, and caring for her family, home and garden. She was a member of the United Methodist Church, UMW, American Legion Auxiliary and Spring Hills Country Club. In the later years, Jim and Betty spent their winters in Arizona City, AZ enjoying the warm weather, golf and socializing with friends.
Betty’s life tragically ended in a car accident in Mallard on Monday, Aug. 16, 2010.
Funeral services will be held at Mallard United Methodist Church on Friday, Aug. 20 at 11 a.m. Visitation will be held at Harris Funeral Home in Mallard on Thursday, Aug. 19, from 3 to 8 p.m.
She will be greatly missed and remembered by her family and friends as a servant-hearted little Italian who loved to cook for family, friends and strangers alike.
Left to cherish her memory are: husband of 62 years Jim Brown; children Nancy (Doc) Nesheim of Mallard, Jerry Brown of Mallard, Barb (Scott) Benz of Lake City, Diana (Don) McKim of Creston; siblings: Delia, Maria, Michelina and many nieces and nephews in Italy, nine grandchildren: Jason (Kelly) Nesheim, Heidi (Bryan) Heinz, Corey (Abby) Brown, Abbey Brown, Brian Brown, Sarah (Kyle) Van Haaften, Emily Benz, Ryan McKim, Katie McKim and 10 great-grandchildren: Claire, Regan, Cael Nesheim, Jackson, Raven, Saige, Jace, Cayden, Carter Brown, and Lauren Isolina Heinz.
She was preceded in death by her mother and father; her brothers Mario, Guido, and Antonio; her sister Antonietta; and grandson Jed Nesheim.
Online condolences: www.harrisfuneralservices.com