A Celebration of Life
Alma Louise LaFontaine Gimenez
May 3, 1896 February 23, 1996
Monday, March 4. 1996
John Thomas Funeral Home
8:30 a.m. 9:30 a.m.
Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral
Celebrant: Bishop Elliott G. Thomas
Western Cemetery I
Alma Louise LaFoataie Gimenez
AbLuse LaFontSine Gimenez was born on May 3, 1896. in St. Thomas.
dhemn de Dumh Wet Indies. The third child of Mne Grizard and Christian
LaFontine, she grw up to be "Daddy's Gir", outspoken and precocious She
completed he sixh grade at he Dorothe School, ad later lamented that her
outspokemess cot her a sdholhip to pursue nursing in Denmark She, instead,
became a seumuuss.
At he age of 14, she accepted the marriage proposal of Ulysses A Gimenez
(Leis"), buthe d elayed mayin him until the age of 26. Meanwhile, she became
"Nmie Alma" to her necs Aagracia "Graie" Maduro Edris Michel, Rose
LaFonatine Rit Forbs, Angel; nephews. Emeso, Anmold, and Mari and, to
numerous members of the de Castro and Molenar families ad the children of her
From her maartagmet six"i c children: Amor (who died of a
defective heart at the ae of 21), Teddy (a retired biochemist who lives in St. Louis
with his wife Bernadine, son Peter and his family) Akan (a physician in Berlin,
Wisconsin and father d grandfather of ten), Aurelio (who died at the age of 13 of
an aggressive infection), Pea (who ives in Sallisaw, Oklahoma with her husband
Bob, four children ad five grdchildren), and John (a bak executive, living in St
Thomas with his wife Norm). Her youngest son. John, was the only one of her
children to make St Thomas his home, providing his mother with a "second" family.
He and his wife have five children Sella Paul Terry, John. ad Paricia ad five
sI'"m' *~' **^
After her husband's passing Alma raised heir six children on her owt
She atk a firm stad dta college educion was the key to success for her children,
sacrificing ad saving during and aAer World War to send her reminig children
to Catholic colleges, with asistace from the V Department of Eucation
Nenie Alma, a she s fondly known to many, was a loving ad geerou
person. She was a member of my civic ad chuch organitions inmduding te
Women' League of St Thoms ad the Girl Scou, with whom she attended mny
weekend camps a Camp Elia Colbe in Pueto Rico.
She was a experienced semtres, ad assisted with the making of te first
white caps ad owns for the Sts Peer ad Paul High School's 1950 graduation
This was a s task, as it ook may monis to complete die gowns but ty were
finished in time for e rst graduation exercises Additionay, Miss Alm ao made
the vesmnts for dm rst radiation exercise, which was held at the Sts. Per and
Paul Ca draL
She also helped d e aer society wih their sewing ad made dhe whie linen
abs for ihe piests. Nenie Alma continued helping d sewing at the school,
especially during he performance in May ad December. An, she continued to
make he caps and owns for the grad& ng classes until de ca s became so large
dut the caps ad gowns were then ordered in mas off-islad
Her cormmitent to the Chrch ad he comm ity was best shown in her
service of visiting de sick and hoseridden twice a moth with ie priest It was
during oe of dtese occamio in May 1978 when Nenie Alm fell and broke her hip,
a iuy om which she never ly recovered. She was 2 a t time
At this time, Jolm, his wife Normia and their children, became the main care
givers for Nennie Alma They asised with her daily care, alensating their schedules
to ensure her contain care. rmaning the aenion and nrturing she had adwys
~t~l~X~XBXP~l~mo ~Bax-A Oil1#
When her mobility became more restricted, Vema Henderson, who had
been previously employed by John, undertook the task of caring for Nennie Alma full
time. As the years past and her health deteriorated, Verna and her family did an
excellent job of ensuring that all of her needs were met. Verna became like another
daughter to her, meeting her daily needs, day in and day out for years.
Nennie Alma was blessed with a long life. This was, perhaps, her blessing
for the generous and loving heart she showed to many. When death came, she knew
it was time and accepted it quietly. She died at the age of 99, just three months
before marking a century of living. She was prepared to go home to be with her Lord
and would want those who are left to mourn her passing to be comforted by this
May the Good Lord bless her and keep her. May He shine His face upon her
and give her peace everlasting.
Theodore Gimenez, Ph.D.
Alonzo Gimenez, M.D.
John L. Gimenez, Sr.
Norma Pickering Gimenez
Peter, Janet, Peter, Robert, Gregory, Michael, Patrick, David, Daniel, Stephen,
Karen, and Sharon Gimenez
Gwynn Humphrey, Linda Powers, Gary Humphrey,
and Susan Ferguson
Stella M. Saunders, Paul L. Gimenez, Esq., Terry A. Gimenez,
John L. Gimenez, Jr., and Patricia "Paddy" Gimenez
Andrew, Britani, Kimberly, Robert, Christopher, Rusty, Jonathan, Beth, Julia,
Charles, Jerrid, Benjamin, Katherine, Johanna, Christie, Holli, Christopher,
Laura, Zachary, Philip, Daniella, Jerome, Ayla, and Tristin
Altagracia "Gracie" Maduro, Rose LaFontaine, Rita Forbes
Theodore Gimenez, Alonzo Gimenez, John Gimenez, Sr.,
Paul Gimenez, Terry Gimenez, John Gimenez, Jr.,
Alphonso Morrishaw, John Henderson, Sr., James Maduro,
Roberto "Tito" Simmonds
Bob Humphrey, Dennis de Castro,
Allan "Brad" Kilpatrick
^OOOi$tEo^O iO50 0
Order of Service
Hymn.......................................................... 170 "1 Surrender All"
Wisdom 4:7-14............................................... Enid de Castro
Psalm 23: 1-3, 3-4, 5, 6........................John L. Gimenez, Sr.
2 Corinthians 5:1, 6-10........................Paul L. Gimenez, Esq.
Communion Hymn......................................... "I'll Walk With God"
Solo: Allan Harrigan
Hymn ofPeace..............................................270 "Bind Us Together"
Communion Hymn..............................................291 "Hear, 0 Lord"
Meditation Hymn............ ......................... ............ "Ave Maria"
Solo: Faye Moon
Eulogy......................................................... Theodore Gimenez, Ph.D.
Recessional Hymn..................................232 "To God Be The Glory"
Hymns Preceding the Service
Shall We Gather At The River
gFa$BF^Hra^ot$ CT m 3 KI~sCF~a~
For years, you helped us in the raising of our five children. You shared
your wisdom and advice, whether we wanted it or not, and for that we thank you.
Because of that, we are better people. You helped in making our children what
they are today. Thank you for your dedicated efforts in making our children safe
and secure, always making time to be there for them, and for us. You have made
an everlasting impression on all of our lives. We will always love and remember
you. Most of all, we will miss you dearly.
John and Norma
You were our refuge, a grandmother who spoiled us when our parents
wouldn't, "sparing the rod and spoiling the child", as only a grandmother could
enjoy doing. You pampered us, yet disciplined us when necessary, You
protected us, yet allowed us to spread our wings, experiencing life and its'
disappointments and rewards. You taught us to stand by our convictions and to
work for what we wanted. Your caring, understanding, affection, and attention
were never ending. It's made us who we are today and we thank you for it. You
shared with each of us a special part of yourself, creating everlasting impressions
that will continue to guide us throughout our lives, and those of our children.
You will be dearly missed but always loved.
Stella, Paul, Terry, Johnny, and Patty
You were there for me from the beginning of my life, "claiming" me
as yours, and so said, so done. You were more of a "second" mother than a
grandmother to me. You guided, sheltered, protected, spoiled, and loved me,
making me the person I am today. You opened the doors of life and opportunity
for me, taking me on your jouneys whenever possible. You took me for my first
visit to the U.S. Mainland at the age of 9, where I learned to ride a horse in
Oklahoma at Aunt Pearl's, rode my first bike at Uncle Teddy's in St. Louis, and
enjoyed the awe of "big city" life while visiting Edris in New York. Later, we
when traveled to the Dominican Republic, we explored the back roads of Haiti
and experienced country life in Santo Domingo. You molded me into what I am
today, giving me the strong characteristics of your life, encouraging me to be
"Daddy's Girl", like you were, but to also be my own person and to always
thrive for the best. It pained me to see such an energetic and independent
woman become confined by an injury, but you endured as only you could. But,
I thank you for all that you have done for me and enparted unto me, for making
me the woman and parent I am today. You will always be a part of my life. I
miss you, Nennie.
We called her "Nennie Alma", all the de Castro children of Tortola.
We came and met the relationship between the LaFontaines (Nennie Alma was
a LaFontaine by birth) and the de Castro families took it for granted, never
asking when or why or wherefore. It was as it were, a blood connection, forged,
not to be broken, by a generation or two before ours. Her mother and our
paternal grandmother were St. Thomians, and had been friends from childhood
and when our mother became a de Castro by marriage, that friendship continued
and flourished. There were visitations between the families for many years,
dating back to the days when Tortola's remoteness was legendary and travel
between the two islands was limited virtually to sailboats. When our brother and
uncle, Godfrey, attended high school in St. Thomas, it was at the home on
Gamble Gade that he first stayed.
Our memories of her are of a gentle lady wh~ regaled us with
tantalizing tales of the old Danish days of class and style; of steam ships entering
Charlotte Amalie's Harbor laden with exotic goods and exotic people from lands
we had never dreamt of and we could never hope to see; of dances and saloons
in a post-Emancipation society. She was loved by all, not least by her Tortola
family and everyone was saddened when this once volatile lady was silenced,
originally, by the passing of her mind, and finally, calmly and peacefully by
Mother Death. As we de Castro's mourn her, it is with more than with a measure
of joy and thankfulness for what she brought and gave to us all, what she is
taking with her and leaving behind, what she inherited, and what she
bequeathed. May she rest in eternal peace,
The de Castro Family and off-spring
To us, you were always known as "Mammy Downstreet". We have
fond memories of you and you will always have a special place in our hearts. We
will miss you. Farewell,
The Maduro, Richardson and Huggins Families
We are thankful for being a part of your family. We will try to
remember the good advice you've given us. We will always cherish your
memory. We love you and we will miss you. May you rest in peace.
Love, Vema and Family
STS. PETER md PAUL SCHOOL
VETERANS DRIVE STATION
Pot Oie Box 1706
ST. THOMAS, VIRGIN ISLANDS 003-1706
February 29, 1996
Dear Members of the Gimenez Family,
On behalf of the Administration, Faculty and Student Body Past and
Present of Sts. Peter & Paul Catholic School we extend our sincere
sympathies on the passing of Mrs. Alma Gimenez from this life.
Students presently in this school may not know of her but her name
and good deeds to this school and her church community are etched in my
Mrs. Gimenez exemplified the qualities that we are striving to instill
in our young students today. Qualities of giving and sharing her talents
and skills to build and improve this church school.
I will remember her pleasant manner and joy of life. May she rest
comfortably in the bosom of the Almighty. May God grant you her family
members the peace of knowing the great legacy she left with others.
(Mrs.) Sara W. Connell
aNDCTML- 7WI ~bute
NNrtarl" d carig
E rpreseat and afteitve
N ottevMfht and .pimuinated
N om-mumd stublmr
I quite am hkfuatire
E uraging ana d eme
A ways spoilig amd supportive
L ovlq Grndmotber
oher Bad wife
A ftectiosate and admired
We love you Mad will always mis yo!
Stella, Philip II, ad Daniella
mm- w w w _
We are deeply grateful to many person wo have been so supportive during
the lg ie,. deah and burial ofour modern and gradmoher.
A special heartifet nk you to Mrs. Vemn Henderson her husband John and
heir sons. Tony. Glenville d John Jr., for their yes of cre-givin, concern,
and support that they provided for Neanie Alm
We also extend our sincere appreciaon to Miss Dorothy and the many
neighbors nd finds who have maisted he family over the yes.
The Gimmes Famaily
r0. A. .0. 1e.
The Family of
Alma Louise LaFontaine Gimenez
would like to express their thanks
for the support and sympathy
you have shown us
in the time four bereveavement
Arrangements by John Thomas Funeral Home
Printed by Supreme Printing