MARIA DEL CARMEN (SEOANE) RODRIGUEZ
Maria (Mucha) del Carmen Rodriguez of Springfield, MA passed away on April 17, 2022, surrounded by her loving family, following a brief battle with cancer. She was 90 years loved.
Maria was born in the village of Orense, Spain, where she met the love of her life, Leonardo “Lenny” Rodriguez, when she was 15 years old. Wanting to make a better life for himself and Maria, Lenny emigrated to the U.S and joined the US Army. Maria waited for Lenny as he served in Korea for 6 years and then returned to Spain to marry her when she was 22. Lenny and Maria moved to Westfield where they made a home and raised 5 children. While Lenny was employed as an interpreter in the Hampden County court system, Maria provided a loving home, and a safe place for all the neighbor’s children to come and play with her own. Maria was curious, fun-loving and full of energy - up for any adventure and an incredibly involved mother, both in schoolwork and at play.
Maria was a very talented fashion designer. Her custom wedding gowns were known throughout the valley for their uniqueness and incredible beauty. After her children were grown, Maria became the interpreter for the Springfield Juvenile Court where she earned the love and affection of everyone she worked with and where she exhibited kindness and compassion, and treated all with respect, generosity and love. Maria never stopped designing and making clothes - making all of her own clothes and clothing for her children and grandchildren, including, of course, wedding gowns.
Being an immigrant with no family in this country, Maria’s husband and children were the central and most important part of her world. Nothing gave her more pride than being Lenny’s wife or joy than mothering her children. She maintained close and active connections to all of her children and grandchildren as they grew, teaching herself to use Skype, Alexa, Zoom, Facebook, etc. whatever it took to stay connected. She maintained her connections with them until the very end of her life - always tracking each person’s successes or hopes. Family connection mattered more to her than anything else in life. Lenny and Maria were married for over 65 years until his death in 2021 which truly broke her heart.
Maria also had a great fondness for gardening - the location of her solace and space for creativity and generativity. Her gardens were incredible works of art, most recently including a series of stations to the Virgin Mary across the span of her yard and plans for a “white blossom garden” in memory of her husband.
She had a strong faith in God and shared that faith and love with her family and with others. Maria was a member of Holy Cross Parish Springfield, where she shared her beautiful singing voice as part of the church choir. Additionally, she was an active Cursillista, Bible Group Member, and contributed to the Prayer Chain. She lived her faith, extending her time and compassion to those in need on any day and at any hour; her capacity to give and love seemed at times limitless.
Maria will be remembered by family and friends as a kind, deeply loving woman, of strong faith and compassion and will be forever loved and forever missed by those who knew her.
Maria is survived by her children, Maria Flora Rodriguez-Maleck and her husband, Paul; Irene Rodriguez and her fiancé, David Kendig; Isabelina Rodriguez-Baez and her wife, Priscilla (Baez); Leonard Rodriguez and his wife, Laura (Carolus); and Daniel and his wife Josephine (Sears); along with 15 loving grandchildren and four great grandchildren, and with another on the way.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, April 25th at 11:15 AM at Holy Cross Church, 221 Plumtree Rd, Springfield, MA 01118, where Maria and Lenny were devoted parishioners. Her Rites of Committal will conclude after her Mass at 1:00 PM at the Massachusetts Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery, 1390 Main Street in Agawam. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that friends make a charitable contribution in Maria’s honor to an organization near to the donor’s heart.
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