Rodriguez, Rafaela

Rafaela Rivera Rodriguez, 78, formerly of Hartford and Farmington, died peacefully March 1st, 2013 at The Village Green of Bristol after a long and courageous battle with Parkinson’s Plus Syndrome. Born in Barrio Farallón, Cayey, Puerto Rico on December 26th, 1934, she was the last of nine children born to the late Luis Rivera Llera and Leonarda Rodriguez Rosado. After the death of her father in 1937, Rafaela was raised by her mother, in the company of her eight siblings on their farm in Farallón. On April 2nd, 1951, she was married to Luis Rodriguez and gave birth to four daughters before moving to Hartford in 1961. In Hartford, Rafaela worked in many factories until moving to Farmington and gaining her certification as a Nurse’s Aide. Throughout her 28 year career as a Home Health Aide for the VNA of Hartford, Rafaela cared for countless elderly men and women, including one very special patient, Clarisse Martin who died in 2001. Above all, family was Rafaela’s greatest joy. She was the best cook, enjoyed her garden, planting zinnias, roses and tomatoes especially. Holidays spent with Rafaela were also very special occasions that she made the most wonderful times of the year. Rafaela spent many vacations in Puerto Rico, Cape Cod and Coastal Maine. Fried calamari and a glass of sangria or ginger ale on the shore were some of Rafaela’s favorite times spent. Besides her husband of nearly 62 years, she leaves behind her four loving daughters, Judith Rodriguez McGann (James) of Manchester, Dallas Rodriguez of West Hartford, Migdalia Rodriguez Merriman of Burlington and Beth Rodriguez of Farmington, seven grandchildren, Jennifer (Rich), Nevada, Erin (Casey), Nicolas, Megan, Michael and Grant, four great-grandchildren, Michael, Mia, Moses and Andrew, three cherished sisters, Rita of Ponce, Puerto Rico, Alejandra of San Juan, Puerto Rico and Mercedes of Miami, FL, as well as over one hundred nieces, nephews, cousins and their families of Connecticut, Puerto Rico, New York, Florida, Iowa, Texas, Massachusetts, and Argentina. She was predeceased by her beloved siblings, Concepción, Ramiro, Isabel, Angela and Ramón and a special son-in-law, Jeffrey Robert Merriman. Friends may call at The Ahern Funeral Home, 180 Farmington Ave., Hartford on Thursday (Apr. 4) from 5:00-8:00pm. Funeral services will be held Friday (Apr. 5) at 10:00am in Emanuel Lutheran Church, 311 Capitol Ave., Hartford followed by burial in Riverside Cemetery, Farmington. Memorial contributions may be made to the Interval House, P.O. Box 340207, Hartford, CT 06134-0207 or to American Parkinson Disease Association, Connecticut Chapter, 27 Allendale Dr., North Haven, CT 06473.

Calling Hours

Thursday, April 4, 2013 from 5:00-8:00pm

Funeral Service

Friday, April 5, 2013 at 10:00am in Emanuel Lutheran Church, 311 Capitol Ave., Hartford

Burial

Riverside Cemetery in Farmington

Memorial Contribution

Interval House, P.O. Box 340207, Hartford, CT 06134-0207 or to American Parkinson Disease Association, Connecticut Chapter, 27 Allendale Dr., North Haven, CT 06473.

15 Responses to 'Rodriguez, Rafaela'

  1. Grant Rodriguez Llera says:

    Miss you, Nana. RIP

  2. Franklin Melzer says:

    Dear Judy:
    Both George and I extend our condolences. We both hope your period of mourning is mitigated by fond memories of your mother. George and I not only value your efforts on our behalf at Commonwealth but we also truly appreciate your friendship.
    Go well, stay well

  3. Elsie Melita says:

    Our thoughts are with you and your family at this sad time.
    Thinking of you – with much sympathy,

    Elsie & Frank

  4. Grant Rodriguez Llera says:

    Pensando en ti como siempre….DTB

  5. Sandy Guze says:

    Dear Beth, Migdalia, and family,

    I am so sorry to have read that you’ve lost your mom. You are so lucky to have had such a wonderful mentor. Although it has been decades since I first met her and spent time in her kitchen on Manchester St. in Hartford, I can still recall her delicious pasteles and arroz dulce,her perpetual warmth and hospitality, and her sparkling, infectious smile.

    I will always cherish those times and the affectionate name she gave me, Sandalia.

  6. Lu Fortier says:

    Don and Lu Fortier express our deepest sympathy to the Rodriquez family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you
    At this difficult time.

  7. Lu Fortier says:

    Don and Lu Fortier express our deepest sympathy to the Rodriquez family. Our thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

  8. Nancy Gustafson says:

    As a nurse at the VNA for many years, I had the pleasure of working with Rafaela many times. It was always welcome news to hear that she had been assigned to work with one of my clients. She entered each home with a smile, a confidence and dignity that immediately put the patient at ease. I respected her work, her observations and the knowledge that she was absolutely dependable. I don’t like to think that this fine woman suffered for even a moment. Her death must bring great loss to her family and leave such an empty space. My thoughts are with you.

    • Beth Rodriguez says:

      Nancy, Thank you for your kind words in memory of my mom. She mentioned you many times and thought very highly of you.

  9. LARRY DRAGO says:

    DEAR DALLAS,WE ARE VERY SORRY TO EARN OF YOUR LOSS..ALL I CAN SAY IS THAT SHE BEAT US TO PARADISE..MAY SHE REST IN PEACE.

  10. Janet Sessions says:

    I miss her and all of you girls and your dad. . She was so lucky to have such a wonderful family. You were there every day to be with her in her time of need. Even in the end you were by her side. She must have been a wonderful person. Loving and caring of others. She fought a long battle but she is an angel now watching over you all. She touched my life and I got to know all of you. God bless you all. May God watch over all of you now with her.

  11. Grant Rodriguez Llera says:

    I love you Nana…very much…stay well

  12. MIGUELANGEL RODRIGUEZ SANTIAGO says:

    ON BEHALF OF MY MOTHER ALICIA AND MY SISTER LUZDIVINA., WE SEND OUR CONDOLENCES. I LOVE YOU TITI RAFAELA. GOD BLESS YOU!

  13. Robin Perez says:

    Beth and family,
    I’m so sorry to hear the loss of of your mom. I was fortunate to meet her several times. She was an amazing woman. I love you.
    Robin

  14. marcia vallier says:

    Migdalia and family… Your mom sounds like a beautiful soul who helped take care of many. May you all find peace during this difficult time. Much love and many blessings

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