Obituary: 'Sally' Paletta

Selvina Brun Nealon Paletta passed away peacefully on Wednesday, February 3, 2021 in Morro Bay, California. Selvina, "Sally," was born to Antonio and Maria Brun in Dunsmuir, California on February 17, 1927.

She grew up in Dunsmuir, graduating from Dunsmuir High School in 1945. During high school she worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad cleaning cabooses. Since she worked in the train yards she got to meet the troops that came through town. More than once she brought home the young soldiers for a home cooked meal. (Maria had an in home restaurant for railroad workers.)

After graduation Sally went to cosmetology school in San Francisco, California. She graduated in 1946 and came home to Dunsmuir to start her long career as a hair dresser. In 1947 she met William "Bill" Nealon. They married February 12, 1949. They had two children, Sharon and William "Billy." In the early 1960s Sally opened her own beauty shop, "Sally's Salon of Beauty." It was quite the "talk of the town" as it was decorated in all purple. Unlike anything Dunsmuir had ever seen. She operated the beauty shop on Dunsmuir Avenue until the building burnt down in the mid 1980s. But she didn't retire. She worked out of her house and in small shops until she was well into her 70s. At one time her oldest client was 104.

In 1973 her husband Bill passed away. She then met a hometown boy, who had returned to Dunsmuir to retire, Pace Paletta. After a long relationship Pace and Sally got married in July of 1987.

Sally loved family and friends. She said she didn't like to cook but she was a good one and loved to entertain. Her other favorite thing to do was gamble! She and Pace would go on long weekends to Reno and Lake Tahoe with friends to gamble and watch the entertainment. 

In 2011 Sally decided it was time to get out of the snow and cold in Dunsmuir. So she moved to Paso Robles, to live with her daughter and son-in-law, Sharon and Stu Ross. She settled into paso Robles life, joining Italian catholic Federation at Saint Rose Church. And she joined the senior center where she enjoyed playing Bingo every Wednesday. She didn't give up her gambling either. She made annual trips north to visit her son, Billy and a trip to the local casinos. And there was her birthday trips to Chumash Casino with friends.

Sally was preceded in death by her parents, Antonio and Maria Brun, brother Gino, sister Enes and husbands, William "Bill" Nealon and Pace Paletta. She is survived by daughter Shareon Nealon Ross (Stu), son William Nealon (Denise), step-son, Ron Paletta, grandchildren Dre Nealon, Kaylee Nealon Anderson (Mike) and Shannon Paletta Stanton (Neil), and three great grandchildren.

A burial servie will be at a future date in the spring. In lieu of flowers please donate to your local food bank.

Posted online on February 17, 2021