Connie Moreirinha passed away on February 24, 2014 with her two daughters at her bedside. She was 90 years old. Connie was born on December 8, 1923, to José Gomes da Silva and Francisca (Frances) Vieira Silva in Castelo Branco, on the island of Fayal, Azores.
In 1942 she met and fell in love with Joseph Moreirinha, a soldier in the Portuguese Army who was stationed in the Azores. In February, 1943, she and Joseph married. They had two daughters, Marie and Mary. During those years Connie acquired expert sewing skills which she carried to her future in America where her family immigrated in July 1959.
They began their life in America in the town of Newcastle, California. In 1967, Joseph passed away at the age of 48, leaving Connie a widow at the age of 44. She supported herself and her daughters by working at various jobs such as housekeeper, fruit sorter in the Newcastle fruit sheds and skilled seamstress. When her daughters married in 1972, she continued to sew and do outside housekeeping work. She loved to take care of her flowers and walk. Besides making clothes for her daughters, she did alterations as well as, made specialty clothing such as for weddings and even military-style jackets for a bag pipe band.
She stayed in her home in Newcastle until she moved to Elk Grove to live with her daughter Mary and son-in-law Harry due to health reasons. In 2002, she fell and was sent to a rehabilitation facility. Later that year she suffered a stroke, underwent surgery for a blood clot and spent six months in a care facility, from which she successfully recovered. When Harry was diagnosed with terminal cancer in 2006, she provided support for both Mary and her husband. She was a strong and caring individual. She had a third stay in a care facility in 2010 for pneumonia-related complications, and recovered and was able to return home.
Her life was not easy but she went through everything with strength of character, bravery and determination, as well as, her unwavering faith in God. She loved her family and thought of her sons-in-law as her "sons". In 2011 she was diagnosed with dementia. After two years of in-home care, it was necessary for her to be placed in a facility for 24 hour nursing care in August, 2013.
She was preceded in death by her father José , her husband Joseph, and her mother Frances, as well as, her sister Mary Pinto, brother-in-law Manuel Pinto, and son-in-law Harry Ames. She is survived by her two daughters Mary and Marie, and Marie's husband William Dudek, as well as, two nephews, Hermengildo Pinto and Jusé Pinto.
Her love for family and her faith served her well in meeting her final challenge. We will miss you and love you.
A visitation is scheduled from 5 pm – 7 pm on Monday, March 3, at Chapel of the Hills, Lincoln Way, Auburn, CA. A rosary will follow at 7 pm. Her funeral mass will be held on Tuesday, March 4, at 11am at St. Teresa of Avila Catholic Church, 11600 Atwood Road in Auburn CA. The graveside service will follow at the Newcastle Cemetery in Newcastle, CA.