Obituary of Felicitas Gabriele Sagnella
Felicitas Gabriele Sagnella (Ruminski) passed away peacefully in her sleep on August 30th, at the age of 94 after being diagnosed with lung cancer 2 years ago. She joyfully got to spend the day prior surrounded by her children, grandchildren and friends.
Felicitas was born on March 19,1926 in Biskupitz, Germany, east Germany near the German/Poland border. Being one of 12 children, and living through war times, she learned about sacrifice and the loyalty of family at a young age.
Later the family moved to west Germany, where her parents continued to instill into her family the value of working hard, getting an education, and the skills for surviving. Living through Nazi Germany during that time was devastating emotionally and physically. The family survived on very little food, and learned to use everything they had as resources. In 1945 The Russians came in & her mom hid her for 7 weeks so she wouldn’t be harmed. Her tenacious spirit, strong attitude, and faith gave her the ability to get through the war, and stayed with her throughout her entire life.
After the war, she got her teaching degree and taught children of multiple ages in a one room school house. She always valued education and gave it everything she had.
Although hardship of circumstances were a part of her life, she never let it define her. She always did the best that she could with whatever limited resources she had accessible. She fought hard and always exuded strength through the challenges.
In 1955 she married Eugene Sagnella, an army soldier whom she met in Germany, and then they moved multiple times to Oahu, Colorado and Washington. Together they had four children, and adopted one. In 1970 she moved to a house in Puyallup, WA, where she would begin 50 years consecutively living in Washington state, and also live her final days in the same house.
When her grandchildren started arriving, she quickly became “Omi” to them. That title became more than just a nickname as she would introduce herself as that, and some adults didn’t even know her full name. She was a beloved Omi to all.
While in Washington, she continued teaching at a private school until she retired. She had a lifelong love of education that poured out into everything she did. Her students always raved about her!
Omi kept physically active and that definitely contributed to the longevity of her life. She went to the gym daily for multiple years and took all the exercise classes. She then continued daily walks until she was 92. Everyone was often impressed with her strength and agility even as an nonagenarian.
She embraced living in America, but she never lost her fondness for Germany. She visited her German relatives whenever she could and brought her kids and grandkids to meet them too. Whenever she saw her siblings in Germany, they shared such a special camaraderie, and it quickly felt like she had never left. She always treasured her days she spent in Germany, and was grateful for every moment with her extended family.
Her fierce desire to continue learning kept her mind active both reading and doing Soduko puzzles into her 90’s. She often crocheted the whole family houseshoes, and did crossword puzzles as well.
She will be most remembered for her tenacious endurance, love of German chocolate, ability to not waste a thing, and her adoration of all of her family members and her loyalty to them.
She is survived by her children Veronica, Mark (Vicki), Christopher (Deyna), Stephen deceased (Sandy), Monica, 14 grandchildren and spouses, and 12 great grandkids. She is also survived by her siblings Dr. Annemarie Mueller, Sister Walburga, Georg, Veronika (Ed). Nieces & Nephews Dieter, Klaus (Karin) Juergen (Waltraud), Elizabeth, Barbara and many other family members.
The family would like to express our sincere gratitude for the loving care Felicitas received from her hospice care team, especially her nurse Brenda as well as her social worker Lisa and her bath aid Hannahli.
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