Cover photo for Clara Foronda Rabaino's Obituary
Clara Foronda Rabaino Profile Photo
1943 Clara 2023

Clara Foronda Rabaino

August 12, 1943 — August 2, 2023

With heavy hearts and profound sadness, we announce the passing of our beloved Clara Foronda Rabaino - a hard-working mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt, and sister - who embodied the spirit of resilience and strength. She passed away on August 2, 2023, just 10 days before her 80th birthday, after struggling with complications from Tuberculosis Meningitis and late-onset Parkinson's disease.

Born in Tamorong, Santa Catalina, Ilocos Sur, Philippines, Clara's early life was defined by raising her six siblings, after her own father passed away, forcing her to drop out of school. She worked hard from an early age, holding jobs as a maid, harvesting rice from different cities, and manual fishing (with her bare hands and via river diving with her sister). All the money she earned went back to her mother to help support their family of seven children. Ever the entrepreneur, she learned the ways of the successful farmers and turned her skills into a profitable business exporting onions, garlic, and other vegetables from the countryside into the markets in Manila and overseas, which helped fund their education and eventual immigration to America. In 1983 at the age of 40, she embarked on a courageous journey to California, seeking more opportunities for her family. Together with her husband, four children, mother, and other family members, she embraced the challenges of a new country.

From the moment she set foot on American soil, Clara worked to support her family. She found a job in the fields and then quickly switched gears to something more lucrative at the invitation of a friend, which was working on a fishing boat in Alaska. She started as a fish sorter and then made her way below deck, where she served as the primary cook for the fishing crew. The work was grueling, she cooked for hundreds of people multiple times a day, and got sea sick often, but the pay was decent and the off-season gave her time to come back home to visit her growing family in the Central Valley, California. She worked with the fishing boat for two decades. During her time there, she picked up bits of new languages and cuisines from other workers, doubled-down on her sense of independence, and learned to stand up for herself with a crew that wasn't always respectful of women or immigrants.

After retiring from the ship, she found herself back in Porterville, California, where she now owned a few real estate properties, grew much of her own food in her backyard garden, and returned to work on local farms. She was still picking grapes in the fields alongside her sister as recently as 2022. Mom was always a hard worker; she hustled to get jobs done, or get the best price or discount, she was incredibly smart with her money and investments, and instilled virtues of independence, resilience, and courage across many generations.

Beyond her tenacity and strength, our mother was also a loving and caring soul. Her primary love language was food and cooking for those she loved. Her grandchildren and great grandchildren especially will always remember her for summoning them to come eat, and then to eat more! She always put the needs of her children first, and saw the best in them no matter the circumstances. She will be remembered for her funny spirit, every story she told she saw as an opportunity to bring joy and laughter to the room. Her laugh was infectious.

As we say farewell to this extraordinary woman, we honor her legacy and the mark she left on all of us. She is preceded in death by her father, Maximino Foronda; mother, Anatalia Foronda; husband, Timeteo Rafanan Rabaino; and sister, Leonida Zavedra. She is survived by her brothers, Marc Foronda (and his wife Lenora Foronda) and Adriano Foronda (and his wife Perfectua Foranda); sisters, Maxima Rabang, Caridad Dela Cruz, and Felicitas Raping (and her husband Felipe Obana); sons, Juanito Rabaino (and his wife Lalaine Rabaino), Benito Rabaino (and his wife LaDonna Rabaino); daughters, Carey Rabaino and Lydia Rabaino Chang (and her husband Lee Chang); 11 grandchildren; and 8 great-grandchildren. May her soul find eternal peace as she joins her ancestors in the great beyond. We carry her spirit in our hearts, forever inspired by her fierce independence and love.

A visitation will be held at Myers Chapel in Porterville, California on Wednesday, August 23, 2023 from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM, this will include a Rosary Prayer at 6:00 PM.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Holy Cross Church in Porterville, California on Thursday, August 24, 2023 at 9:00 AM. Interment to follow at St. Anne's Cemetery in Porterville, California.

To light a virtual candle, share a memory, or express condolences to the family, please visit the tribute section of our website at www.myersfuneral.com/obituaries <http://www.myersfuneral.com/obituaries>. Myers Funeral Service & Crematory in Porterville is in charge of arrangements.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Clara Foronda Rabaino, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation for Clara Foronda Rabaino

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

3:00 - 7:00 pm

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Rosary for Clara Foronda Rabaino

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Starts at 6:00 pm

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Mass of Christian Burial for Clara Foronda Rabaino

Thursday, August 24, 2023

Starts at 9:00 am

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