Esmee Bellalta, emerita professor of architecture, dies

Author: Michael O. Garvey


Esmee Marian (Cromie) de Bellalta, emerita professor of architecture at the University of Notre Dame, died Feb. 15.She was 79 years old.

A native ofLondon, Bellalta was a 1942 graduate ofHarvardUniversitys Graduate School of Design and taught for many years at the Universidad Catolica de Chile inSantiagobefore joining the Notre Dame faculty in 1976.She came to Notre Dame accompanied by her husband Jaime Juan Jose Bellata, professor emeritus of architecture.He survives, as do their 10 children, 26 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

An internationally celebrated landscape artist with a reputation for regarding her students not only as colleagues but as dear friends, she retired in 1995 but soon found herself coordinating the Justice Education Program at Saint Mary’s College.She and her husband of 54 years were inseparable and presided over a tumultuous, variegated and utterly endearing family in whose home the most fortunate members of two generations of Notre Dame students and faculty were splendidly entertained.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated at3:30 p.m.Tuesday (Feb. 20) in the Basilica of the Sacred Heart on campus.Burial will follow at a later date inCedarGroveCemetery.There will be no visitation, but family members have asked that memorial donations be made to the Holy Cross Missions, Notre Dame, IN., 46556.

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