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Phyllis Kay (Barbie) Musella 

54, of Big Bear City lost her valiant battle with cancer surrounded by her loving family on Tuesday, May 15, 2012.

Phyllis was born March 1, 1958, in Elmwood, Ohio, to parents Russell and Margaret (Barabas) Austin. Having contracted polio at 17 months of age, she learned what it was like to be a fighter almost from the start. She was married Feb. 17, 1979 in West Covina, to Ralph Musella. They moved to Big Bear to raise their children where she worked as an aid at Baldwin Lane Elementary and Big Bear Middle School. Phyllis is best known for her caring heart and creativity. She spent much of her time hand making gifts for friends and family, making elaborate first-place winning Halloween costumes, throwing parties for her children, and loved assisting the class of 2009 in making beautiful, elaborate Home-coming floats.

She is survived by her husband, Ralph Musella; sons, Ralph Musella Jr., Justin L. Musella, Jathon F. Musella; daughter, Breana M. Musella; grandson Anthony Musella; father, Russell C. Austin; mother, Margaret L. (Barabas) Austin; brothers, Russell E. (Ginamaria) Austin, Mark S. Austin, Jefferson B. (Alicia) Austin, Wayne M. Austin; sisters, Patricia A. (Charles) Lewis, Linda C. Factor as well as a large extended family.

A celebration of her life will be held Saturday June 2, 2012 at 3 o'clock in the afternoon, with family at 3855 Obsidian Road, San Bernardino CA 92407.

Phyllis was adamant about being a donor, feeling that medical science had truly helped her achieve a better quality of life.

In lieu of flowers, it was Phyllis’s wish that donations be made to a cancer foundation of your choice. Strides have been made in cancer research and she hoped that future generations would not have to endure the pain of this deadly disease.

"Big Bear Grizzly" Posted: Tuesday, May 29, 2012 5:20 pm


Submitted by: Peggy Hooper