Elta “Missy” Maria Cherry

    Date of Birth
    Date of Death

    Elta Papke, born at the Queen of Angels Hospital in Los Angeles, California, May 12th, 1938, passed away peacefully April 12, 2023, surrounded by her loving family.
    Missy, as she was affectionately known, grew up in the Laughin Park Section of the Hollywood Hills when it was an idyllic semi-rural environment, and graduated from John Marshall High School.
    Missy attended The University of California, Berkeley, where she pledged Delta Delta Delta Sorority. Missy was elected the 1955 Sweetheart of Sigma Chi. She made lifelong friends on campus. After college and throughout her life she traveled yearly with her sorority pledge sisters.
    While at Cal, Missy met her future husband, fellow student and member of the football team, Jim Cherry. Missy earned a master’s degree in education and went on to become an elementary school teacher, earning tenure in the San Francisco Unified School District.
    Missy and Jim lived in the San Francisco Marina District and Berkeley Hills. After her daughter, Carolyn, and son, Will were born, Jim’s career took the family back to Southern California where they had many joyful years in Santa Barbara before settling for 51 years in San Marino.
    Missy, along with Jim, supported Cal and Cal athletics throughout her life. For decades, every fall during football season, Missy and Jim traveled to Berkeley to attend home games. Missy became active in the Junior League of Pasadena and took pride in managing the Junior League’s thrift shop. In 1979, Missy assumed the role of general manager of her parents’ business, Wilshire Medical Exchange, and served in that capacity until negotiating the sale of the exchange.
    Education and the pursuit of learning guided Missy throughout her life. Besides providing a great home for family members in San Marino, Missy maintained a beach home in Manhattan Beach, where her children and grandchildren developed a love of the ocean and ocean sports. Grandkids always took top priority and when her
    five grandchildren each turned 10 years old, she and Jim traveled to a destination in the world chosen by the grandchild.
    Missy was a consummate chef and often prepared elaborate meals. She spent hours gardening in her San Marino home. From the time she was a child until the end of her life, Missy visited her family cabin on Virginia Lake near Lee Vining. Annually, for over 50 years, Missy and Jim gathered in Yosemite with their dear friends, Sally and Sandy Small.
    Missy’s biggest love was her family. She is survived by her loving husband of 63 years, Jim, as well as her sister, Margie Block, and her brothers Peter Papke and Greg Papke. Missy will be missed greatly by her daughter and son-in-law, Carolyn and Lane Hornung of Boulder, Colorado; her son and daughter-in-law, Will and Hilary Cherry of Manhattan Beach, California; and her grandchildren Savannah Owen and her husband Tom; Gage Hornung, Beck Cherry, Melissa Hornung and Cash Cherry.
    Remembrances can be made to Alzheimer’s Los Angeles at 4221 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 400, Los Angeles, California 90010. Donate at https://connect.alzheimersla.org/Missy or call (323) 930-6246. If you prefer to mail a donation, please make checks payable to Alzheimer’s Los Angeles and include Missy’s name.