Jul 30, 2014

Beloved Wife of Yankee Great Yogi Berra Dies at 85

Montclair resident succumbed Thursday night at Crane's Mill in West Caldwell to complications from a recent stroke.

Beloved Wife of Yankee Great Yogi Berra Dies at 85
Carmen Berra, the wife of longtime New York Yankee Yogi Berra, died Thursday from complications from a stroke she suffered earlier this year.

Berra, who died at Crane's Mill Assisted Living Facility in West Caldwell, was 85 years old.

The couple, who lived in Montclair, celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary on Jan. 26, according to the New York Daily News.

Carmen Berra was active at the Yogi Berra Museum & Learning Center at Montclair State University. A blog on the museum's website pays tribute to the "perfect companion and baseball wife."

Museum director Dave Kaplan told Newsday the staff and others who knew her were deeply saddened by her death.

"She was a remarkable woman and consummate companion of Yogi, and both fervently believed in the core values of the museum and learning center," Kaplan told Newsday. "We will miss her terribly."

Yogi Berra and Carmen Short met in 1947 when she was a waitress in St. Louis, where the two grew up, according to NorthJersey.com. Yogi Berra, 88, was a minor league baseball player at the time and went on to win 10 World Series championships and earned three American League MVP awards. The catcher also twice managed the Yankees.

A moment of silence was held Friday night for Carmen Berra prior to the Yankees spring training game against the Detroit Tigers in Tampa.

“I often talk about Yogi being one of the greatest baseball players ever, but being one of the most humble and approachable guys I’ve ever been around," Yankee Manager Joe Girardi said, according to NorthJersey.com. "And Carmen happened to be the wife of one of the greatest players ever; probably as nice a lady as you could ever be around.

“She was just a sweetheart, and it’s so nice to always be in her presence. She truly cared about so many people.”

The Berras had three sons, Larry, Tim and Dale, and 11 grandchildren.

"She died peacefully—she went the way she would have wanted to," Larry Berra told the Daily News. “We’re grateful that she and Dad were able to spend some good time together (Thursday). I’m not just saying this because she was my mom, but she was one of the great women of all time.”

A funeral will be held Tuesday at Immaculate Conception in Montclair.

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