Mary Fernandez

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Mema

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Mary graduated from Julia Richmond High School and went straight to work.  Mary had a strong work ethic and would give her mother her whole paycheck to help with household expenses, only sparing enough money for carfare and 50 cents to go dance at The Palladium every Friday night.  In 1952 her family relocated and together with her sister and mother, they brought a house in the Bronx.

Mary was all about the music.  She loved to dance and followed the big bands of the time.  It was at a dance that she met her beloved husband, Albert Fernandez, who she re-nicknamed Freddy.

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Mary and Freddy were married on May 29, 1954 at St. Cecelia’s Church on East 106th Street.  Mary gave birth to their eldest daughter, Rachelle in 1955 and their only son Albert in 1959.  In 1971, Mary had twin daughters, Maria and Melissa.

She profoundly loved her children and made many happy memories for them growing up in The Bronx.  She loved to play practical jokes and games and take her family on outings.

In 1983 Mary began working at New York University as an Executive Assistant in the Office of Development for 13 years where she was part of a multi-million dollar fundraising campaign.  She loved Greenwich Village and enjoyed being around young people and her co-workers, many of whom she called friends.  Mary took courses while working at NYU in English Literature and Creative Writing.

After she retired in 1996, she moved to Cedar Glen Lakes in the Whiting, New Jersey with her husband.  Mary became involved in many clubs and groups.  She was president of Ladies of the Lake and a member of Common Goal, The Red Hats, The Piecemakers, S.O.S (Samaritans of Service), The Fishing Club, The Variety Players and The Cedar Chips.

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Mary loved to laugh and have a good time.  Her passion was the Yankees and music.  Mary was a talented quilter.  She loved to read, was wise,  generous and had a great sense of humor.  She made many friends wherever she went, but never forgot the old ones.  Mary always had compassion for people, especially people in need of help and support.  People would say she had a Heart of Gold.  Mary was a believer of Jesus Christ and a devout Catholic.  She practiced most the Golden Rule, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” and “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

To say the last few years challenged Mary, in many ways is an understatement.  No matter what, Mary maintained a strong, courageous and happy spirit.  She hardly never complained; she never lost faith in God and was always thankful for the many blessings in her life.   Mary was many things to many people; devoted daughter and sister, a loving wife, a beloved mother and grandmother, mother-in-law, aunt, godmother and dear friend.   She was most dedicated to the happiness of her family and what is most important in life: to love and be loved.  Her family was the love of her life.  She is survived by those of us who carry on her legacy, her husband Albert Fernandez, her children, Rachelle Fernandez-Rivera, Albert Fernandez, Maria Fernandez, Melissa Fernandez, son-in-law Joseph Rivera and grandchildren, Joseph Rivera, Desiree Rivera, Teresa Rivera, and Peter Rivera.

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God Bless Mary and the peace that is now hers for we can rest assured that our beautiful Mary is at peace and in Heaven.  On December 25, 2010 she became our Christmas angelita forever.

We will miss Mary dearly.  Her memory lives on in our hearts forever whenever we laugh, dance and live life every day to the fullest!

1 Comment

  1. What a remarkable women for her time. This is a beautiful love – letter to your Mami and to her life. Carry on…

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