Maria Mercedes Santiago Garcia Obituary

Maria Mercedes Santiago Garcia

Maria Mercedes Santiago 1931 “CHERE” 2020 Maria was born in Fajardo, Puerto Rico on November 25th, 1931. The youngest of 7 children born to Heriberta Santiago Garcia and Rafael Santiago. In order of age, Maria’s siblings were Venancio, Joaquin, Juancho, Isaac, Leocadio, and Fernanda. All welcomed Maria to Heaven when she arrived. Maria is survived by her older son Edwin “Tommy” Dones, the product of her first marriage to Alejo Dones, who was also a Fajardo native. Maria is also survived by her younger son Edward “Eddy” Burns, the product of her second marriage to Thomas Burns, a U.S. Marine veteran from Kentucky who she met while he was stationed in Roosevelt Roads Naval Base in Ceiba, P.R. The Santiago family was one of extraordinarily strong Faith and Convictions. Despite being from a lower middle-class family, all were well educated and attended college. All of Maria’s male siblings served in the Army. Isaac nicknamed, “Catun”, was a decorated member of the distinguished Puerto Rican 65th Infantry Division, nicknamed by the Department of Defense “The Borinqueneers”. Isaac fought in WW2, Korea, and Vietnam. Service and being a good neighbor were at the core of the Santiago family. So as Maria grew up in Fajardo and throughout her entire life, she worked in jobs that provided aid to citizens, whether it was governmental or civil. As a wife of a Marine at the time and a military dependent, she continuously volunteered and participated in military activities for active duty soldiers at Parris Island, S.C. and with the veterans of the local American Legion Posts. Even as Alzheimer started to take its toll on Maria, she continued to volunteer at a chapter of The American Legion in Puerto Rico until the age of 76, until she retired in 2007. There she was crowned several times by the veterans and fellow volunteers as the “Queen of the American Legion Post”. Being that both of Maria’s Sons were living in Orlando and realizing that her condition would worsen, they brought her to Florida to find the best care for her. Maria was given residence at a specialized facility that treated progressive mental illnesses. The staff of the facility were always awesome and took excellent care of Maria. Eddy and Tommy would spend time with Maria there and occasionally would obtain approval to take her out of the facility. Even with her mental limitations from the Alzheimer, Maria’s heart for giving and neighborly spirit was evident for staff and fellow patients at the medical facility. Every birthday cake that was brought to her to celebrate, she demanded that everyone get a piece. Close communication was maintained by staff concerning her condition and any arising needs. Maria remained under medical care at the facility until her passing. Maria’s Daughters in Law: Annette and Lucy. Maria’s Grandchildren: Gabrielle, Bryan, Zuleyka, Hommy, and Josue. And Maria’s Greatgrandchildren Annelys and Emily, Thank You for being of support and showing us LOVE with your presence. GOD Bless you!
November 25, 1931 - September 5, 202011/25/193109/05/2020
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Obituary

Maria Mercedes Santiago 1931 “CHERE” 2020 Maria was born in Fajardo, Puerto Rico on November 25th, 1931. The youngest of 7 children born to Heriberta Santiago Garcia and Rafael Santiago. In order of age, Maria’s siblings were Venancio, Joaquin, Juancho, Isaac, Leocadio, and Fernanda. All welcomed Maria to Heaven when she arrived. Maria is survived by her older son Edwin “Tommy” Dones, the product of her first marriage to Alejo Dones, who was also a Fajardo n...

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Sep
16
Gathering
Wednesday, September 16 2020
05:00 PM - 06:00 PM
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Sep
16
Celebration of Life
Wednesday, September 16 2020
06:00 PM - 07:00 PM
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1018 West Avenue
Clermont, FL 34711
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