- Ann T. Keene
Belli, Melvin (29 July 1907–09 July 1996), lawyer, was born Melvin Mouron Belli (pronounced Bell-eye) in Sonora, California, to Caesar Belli, a prosperous banker and rancher whose family had emigrated from Switzerland after the Civil War, and Leonie Mouron Belli. After spending his early childhood in Sonora, Melvin moved with his parents to the town of Stockton, California. During his youth he was especially drawn to his maternal grandparents: he was fascinated by the medical collections of his grandfather, a physician and surgeon, and by the apothecary jars in the drugstore owned by his grandmother, the first female pharmacist in California. Medicine, however, never appealed to him as a career, nor was he especially interested in science. A romantic by temperament, he preferred reading adventure stories by ...