Mel Rodrigues passed away

To all Elks, Funeral services for Mel Rodriguez will be September 6th in Lewiston
Funeral--10:00am at Vassar-Rawls Funeral Home, 920 21st Ave.
Graveside--11:00am, Normal Hill Cemetery, 1122 7th St.
Reception--Lewiston Elks Lodge, 3444 Country Club Dr.

Melvin J. Rodrigues passed away at Tri-State Memorial Hospital on Aug 28,2013.

He was born April 15 1935, to Joseph and Eleanor Freas Rodrigues in 'Oakland, Calif.

Mel graduated from Castlemont High School in Oakland and Stanford University in California.

Mel worked for Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) for 35 years. He started digging ditches for gas lines and worked himself into a position of manager of Support Services with the Peninsula Division. During that time Mel was drafted in the Army, where he served his country from 1959 to 1964.

After years of searching, Mel found his "one true love" in Maja Spaans. They were married Aug 26 1989, and just shared their 24th anniversary. They retired in 1991 and moved to Idaho. Mel enjoyed fishing and hunting and became a highly active member of the Lewiston Elks. He was a past Exalted Ruler, past ISEA Accident Prevention / Manager, past District Deputy, past State President and a board member of the Elks Rehab Hospital in Boise. In tribute to Mel's devotion and service to the Elks Organization, the 2013 annual Idaho Elks Food Caravan is being dedicated to Mel's memory. Other achievements of Mel's were as a sponsored executive involved with the United Way of San Francisco, an Accredited Judge for the American Dahlia Society, and additional memberships with the Eagles and American Legion. Mel also was licensed to perform marriages and was always willing and happy to perform or offer those services.

Mel never met a stranger. He had a generous spirit, was quick with a joke, a master gardener and friend to all. Mel was the go-to guy in the neighborhood. If you were ever in need and Mel saw it, he was there in a heartbeat. In the last couple of years, with steadily declining health, Mel never stopped serving. He attended Elks functions whenever possible and continued to be a fountain of lawn and gardening advice for all his neighbors. The Rodrigues backyard, which Mel designed, is a sanctuary and favorite gathering place. His family, friends and neighbors were all greatly blessed by Mel's presence and vibrant personality. We will cherish his memory with his loving wife, Maja.

Mel was preceded in death by his father and mother. He is survived by his wife, Maja; daughter Valerie
from Hayward, Calif.; sister Beverly (Gal) Robinson from Lewiston; sister and brother-in-law Ineke and
Klaas van Hoegee from the Netherlands; cousin Samie Valin of Lewiston; and several nieces and nephews. In
conjunction with the funeral service at Vassar-Rawls at 10 a.m. Friday, Sept. 6, the BPOE Elks will also perform an honor and graveside service.

Memorial donations may be made to the Idaho Elks Rehab Hospital, P.O. Box 1100, Boise, 10 83701; or to a charity of your choice.