She was born in Dawson, New Mexico, to Fiora and Joseph Gherardi and lived there until 1930 when her family moved to Los Padillas in Albuquerque’s south valley, where the Gherardi Farm was established. She spent her childhood working on the farm and going to school. After graduating from Albuquerque High School in 1943, she married Elliot Andreoli and moved to Eagle Nest, where she worked on the family farm milking cows, raising chickens, harvesting crops and canning.
After her daughters were born, Gina was involved with whatever her girls were doing at school, whether it was being a sponsor for 4-H Club, FHA, or just helping out. She was a talented seamstress making beautiful dresses for the girls and teaching them to sew. An excellent cook, she enjoyed fixing meals of homemade pasta, bread, roasts, stews, soups, and delicious desserts, cream puffs being one of her favorites. Gina was a member of the Silver Spruce Club in Eagle Nest, where she enjoyed the club meetings and activities.
When the work on the farm decreased, Gina became a school bus driver. She loved being around the children, especially the kindergarteners, and always had many stories to share. After retiring from driving, she found plenty to keep her busy. She, Elliot and Sam (Elliot’s brother) continued to live on the farm in the beautiful Moreno Valley, where they enjoyed the wonderful produce from their garden. In 2008, they began spending the winters in Albuquerque. In 2010 after Elliot’s death, Gina and Sam remained in Albuquerque to be close to family.
Gina had a love for life. She enjoyed visiting and looked forward to hearing about other’s lives. As one of her caregivers said “GG never met a stranger.” Music brought joy to her life, whether it was listening (Spanish and polka music were her favorite), singing, dancing or playing her harmonica. She loved animals, especially her cats White Foot and Tiger, and she loved watching and listening to the birds. GG was a loving mother, grandmother, sister and aunt. She will live forever in our hearts. We will remember her sparkling eyes, sweet smile, infectious laugh, gentle spirit and loving touch. We miss her greatly.
Gina is survived by daughters: Lynette Holbrook (Bruce), Linda Andreoli (Kevin Linker), Ginelle Andreoli (Mark Welsh); sister Annie Tafoya (now deceased, 8-24-17); grandsons: Adam Holbrook, Kyle and Taylor Linker, and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Elliot; parents, Joe and Fiora Gherardi and brother, Jimmy Gherardi. The family thanks and appreciates the following people for making it possible for GG to live out her life at home: Dr. Sandra Qaseem, Dr. Soumya Reddy, members of Alliance Hospice Care Team for their excellent care over the past few months, and her wonderful, compassionate caregivers for the care, love and comfort they provided during the past four years. We are forever grateful to them.
Cremation has taken place. Service and interment will be held at a later date at Santa Fe National Cemetery, where she will be laid to rest with her husband, Elliot.