OBITUARY

Olga Balda Gonzalez

May 21, 1926May 26, 2018
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It is with profound sadness & a heavy heart that we announce the passing of our loving & wonderful mom, Olga Balda Gonzalez, on Saturday, May 26th, 2018. She transitioned 5 days after her birthday when she reached the beautiful age of 92. We have faith in our hearts that Jesus was there to take her hand at 5:30 a.m. when He was ready to take her up to heaven. She is blessed to be spending eternity with Him & all her loved ones that have passed on before her. As she often thought about her mortality she would say “She will go back Home & be at Peace”. Olga is survived by her beloved husband Moises, our loving dad, who is approaching 98 years of age in June. They were married on July 23, 1949 & have shared all the good times & bad times imaginable, & even some unimaginable moments, in their lifetimes during such a long & happy marriage. They loved each other unconditionally with strong faith in God. They trusted Him to get them through the difficult times in life; remembering to thank Him for His many blessings. As a child, I remember hearing them pray every night before they went to sleep. They would tell us “A family that prays together, stays together”. Olga is loved immensely by her 4 children who will miss her profoundly. Her dear children Rosemarie, Olga, Moises, & Joseph intensely grieve her passing. Their spouses, Mark, Louie, Jill & Lisa, loved Olga very much & strongly grieve for their “Second Mom”. Her grandchildren Jennifer, Joseph Jr., Eric, Brandon & Brooke, along with their spouses, James, Daniella & Allison, respectively, loved Olga very much & are grieving her passing. Olga was often referred to as “Nana” to her grandchildren who are greatly mourning her loss with much sorrow & love. Olga was also blessed to have 5 great-grandchildren: Braden, Parker, Wyatt, Cheyanne & Bella. A sixth great-grandchild is expected sometime this July. Since all babies are “Little Angels” who come from heaven, our mom will be blessed to be the first one to meet him before he begins his life on earth. Olga leaves behind many family members & friends who loved her. She is very much loved & being mourned by her surviving siblings (Raul, Hector, Ruben & Lillian), & her surviving half siblings (Elisenda, Danilo, Ana Dolores, Elizabeth, Maria Virginia & Omar), their spouses, their children & their spouses, their grand-children & great-grandchildren – all too numerous to mention by name. Olga was born in Manhattan, NY & lived there with her parents & younger brother Miguel. Her dad was a Dentist. When she was 2 years old, her parents moved to Venezuela with Olga & Miguel, due to the Depression. She was the eldest child out of 8 born to her mom Maria Asuncion Montalvo de Balda & dad Miguel Antonio Balda. Her mom died at age 33 from Typhoid Fever. At only 12 years of age, Olga was traumatized as a result. Her dad agreed to let her live with Catholic nuns at their convent for 2 yrs. She even considered becoming a nun. A year after her mom died, her dad remarried. His second marriage was blessed with 9 children. Olga returned to Manhattan, NY at age 19 where she lived with her aunt Ana Dolores & her aunt’s husband Dario. She went to school to learn Pitman Shorthand Stenography & typing, where she also learned the English language quickly. She worked as a secretary at the “Cunard Line”/”White Star Line “(Titanic fame). She later worked at “Garcia & Diaz”, also as a secretary, where she met our dad Moises. They fell in love & were married when she was 23 & he was 29. Olga enjoyed many hobbies, was ambitious & very intelligent. She has a library of almost 1,000 books. She loved to read. Her favorite topics were usually esoteric, metaphysical, inspirational, & spiritual. She also liked mystery novels, “self-help” books & was opened- minded to almost any reading topic. Her other hobbies included sewing, knitting, crochet, needlepoint, embroidery, counted-cross stitch, punch needle, playing the piano, & listening to relaxing music. Her favorite TV shows were “Ancient Aliens”, “America’s Funniest Videos”, “The Mothers-in-Law” & “Golden Girls”. She also enjoyed “Looney Toons” & would crack up at “Tweety Pie’s” antics. She would comment that “Tweety Pie” wasn’t so innocent since he would get back at “Sylvester the Cat” much worse than he did to “Tweety”. Mom’s favorite movie was “Cinderella”. When we watched the new versions – “Cinderella 2 & 3”, she said “That’s not the Cinderella I remember!” When I brought the original Cinderella for us to watch, she enjoyed it with a big smile & was happy. Mom also liked Shirley Temple movies & watched them at the movie theater when she was a little girl in Venezuela.

Mom would make me laugh whenever we watched “Ancient Aliens” because she would question why one of the actors always wore his hair straight up, as if he just put his finger in a light socket. I don’t think she really paid attention to the show, because she was always looking for him to show up so she could comment on his hair & laugh. I ended up calling him her “boyfriend” & she would smile. Her favorite episode in the “Mothers-in-Law” was when Eve Arden & Kaye Ballard were performing on Ozzie Nelson’s TV Special. After they were all done singing, Kaye would take a bow. Unfortunately, Ozzie happened to be standing behind her & in front of a pond. Needless to say, he ended up in the water. To add insult to injury Kaye & Eve came out on stage for a second bow. This time Eve decided to move her left hand out to point to the band. Poor Ozzie was next to her & ended up in the pond a second time. Mom would laugh every time she saw this episode, no matter how many times she saw it. It felt good to see her happy & hear her laughter. She also loved watching “The Golden Girls”. Her favorite actress was the elderly mom “Sophia”. She was a cantankerous woman who would say what she felt like, no matter how inappropriate. Mom would always laugh at Sophia’s boldness. We watched the shows so many times that mom had the episodes memorized. She loved cooking for her family when we were growing up. We were always pleasantly surprised & delighted to experience the aroma of her many wonderful & delicious baked goodies. She was in our opinion, a “culinary expert” who whipped up delicious meals. Of course, there was the occasional exception that didn’t “tickle our palates”, such as “Fish Head Soup” (broth) every Friday. Her reasoning behind this was that we couldn’t eat meat on Fridays, per the Catholic Church rules. As a child, I dreaded Fridays & always complained. I questioned why we couldn’t have something tastier like “macaroni & cheese”. She would say that the “Fish Head Soup” would make us “Very Smart”. Having no choice since I was hungry, I would make a face & hold my nose so I couldn’t taste the broth. It usually worked. Then there was the “Liver incident”. I was around 4 years old & remember being very stubborn about eating this for dinner. I didn’t care for the “fragrance”. For numerous hours (seemed like an eternity), my father sat next to me saying there was nothing else for dinner. He became tired before I did. At long last, I took a bite & loudly complained that it tasted like “dog food”. Poor mom, I’m sure she was hurt by my remark, but being only 4 yrs. old, I didn’t know better. Of course, I then went to bed without supper. Olga loved challenges & went to school for “pattern making”. She worked hard to get her H.S. diploma & attended SUNY at Farmingdale, NY for various college courses. Among them were accounting & child psychology. She worked as a Bi-Lingual Executive Secretary for the Vice-President at American Express in NYC for many years. She would commute from Long Island for 2 hours daily round trip, with our dad. He drove her to work, then to his job at the World Trade Center (before 9/11). They both had the day off during the “1993 Terrorist Attack” in the basement of the WTC, where they usually parked their car. They also were commuting home from work during the “NYC Blackout” in the 1960’s. They had to leave the subway car & walk along the tracks in total darkness, along with the conductor & other people, until they were able to find an exit out of the tunnel. It took them numerous hours to get home to Brooklyn, where we lived for 16 years. Olga was a member of the Rosicrucian Order, AMORC since 1968. She became a “Master” & served at the “Dove Pronaos” lodge in Long Island, NY from 1984-1985. She also loved attending Chandler (Compass) Christian Church in Arizona for many years, while she was still able to use a walker. She would sing along with the band, enjoy the sermons & receive communion. She was always beaming & very happy afterwards. Olga was a wonderful, loving woman, fantastic mom & friend, who always put others first. She shared her love, wisdom, kindness & generosity with all people she knew. She is loved by everyone whose life she touched & will be greatly missed. She was a guiding, bright light in this world. She would offer advice, sympathy, compassion, hope, faith & love to others in their times of need. She will always be remembered by all who loved her & will remain in their hearts forever.

Services

  • Memorial Service Saturday, June 9, 2018
REMEMBERING

Olga Balda Gonzalez

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Olga Molinari

June 10, 2018

Mom made this for me saying I was her angel because I was there advocating and coordinating her care her back in 2003 when she was hospitalized several times and and I continued to do so for many years after. She is an always has been my loving mother, friend and my angel.

Olga Molinari

June 10, 2018

Mom I was too upset to speak yesterday at your service. I am grateful that you were such a loving mother to me. Thank you for your love and your intuition which saved my life when I was three years old. You guided me with your wisdom over the years and I am happy and privileged to have had you for a mother and to be able to care for you for ten years while you had several health issues. You always said you felt like a burden but were never that to me. I know you always wanted to help others and it was difficult for you to let others help you but your health was not what it used to be.
You took care of my great grandmother as well as your siblings when your mother died and were always the loving caregiver.
I remember you tucking me in at night after a warm bath and telling me how to pray to my guardian angel in Spanish before I went to sleep. I also remember how you felt bad that your mom died so young and felt guilty that you didn’t want to wear a dress she had made for you both and then you never got to wear it with her since she died. I remember telling you that just as you loved us she loved you and forgave you as all mothers forgive their children since their love is unconditional. I didn’t realize how much pain you felt from the loss of your mother till I lost you.
I remember when you took me to work with you at American Express where you worked as a bi-lingual executive assistant for a Mr. La port during the holidays at one World Trade Center and how beautiful the building was with poinsettias everywhere and large gold lame bows.
Your command of both the English and Spanish languages were uncanny and even though you had an accent, which I loved to imitate, you seemed shy about your accent which was much like that of actress Penelope Cruz. I felt that imitation was the sincerest form of flattery, but you did not.

Jennifer Molinari-calhoun

June 10, 2018

Part 3/3: Days before she passed, before her mind and body gave into what was happening, she wasn’t able to say much that was coherent but after an hour in the hospital room she looked me straight in the eyes and said, “I love you.” I will forever keep that memory dear to my heart. I love you too Nana, so much. And I will love you and miss you for the rest of my life. Thank you for all you taught me. Thank you for your never ending, unconditional love. Thank you for teaching me the importance of forgiveness - though I am not sure I have proven myself to be a very good student. Thank you for showing me patience is a virtue and most importantly thank you for filling my life with memories and love. I will forever carry them, and you, with me for the rest of my life.

Jennifer Molinari-Calhoun

June 10, 2018

Part 2/3 :One of the favorite things she used to make me, besides her soup, was tuna melts. To this day I still prefer hot sandwiches because of this-you can ask my husband.

When Nana wasn’t cooking or cleaning she enjoyed watching CNN-something she received grief for daily. I remember her sitting in front of the TV, futzing with the pelitos on her neck, just shaking her head in disbelief, saying, “Aye dios mio,” and “I don’t know,” over and over again. She also love to sew, she made me dresses and sweaters and eventually she made my first son, Braden, a baby blanket-something I will forever cherish. She would play the piano and tried her hand at learning computer games. She was also God-fearing and involved in the rosecrution. I can still remember her every morning with her rosary beads and rose scented incense, praying below the photo of Jesus on her sewing room wall. She loved God.

My grandparents moved to Arizona in the late 90s, about five years after my family did. When my dad traveled or when my parents went out for the night or even every day after school I was with my grandparents. I have so many fond memories of this woman, a woman I have been blessed to call Nana all these years, a type of woman I am quite confident no longer exists in this world and a woman who has finally gone home, as she would say, to her rightful place beside the Lord. Where she will one day be reunited with my papa-the love of her life and partner for 69 years. She will forever be one of my angels.

Towards the end of her life she fell ill and wasn’t able to be as involved in family. She was able to meet her first three great grandchildren and exuded nothing but light and love for them. Her patients and spirit through life was nothing less than astonishing and is something I could only hope to one day aspire to.

Olga Molinari

June 3, 2018

I loved this photo of my mom on my wedding day. It was her birthday and she said she didn't want to celebrate her birthday to take away from my wedding. I told her I would not be here if it weren't for her and her birthday was an important part of my day as well. We surprised her at my wedding with flowers which I had my brother Moe present her with and sang happy birthday to her since I wanted her to know just how special she was to all of us.

Olga Molinari

June 3, 2018

Mom you always said each of has has only one mother and she is not replaceable. You were so right. Cherish the mother's you have while you can. Love you forever mom.

Lisa Collins Gonzalez

May 27, 2018

Lisa Collins Gonzalez

May 27, 2018

Lisa Collins Gonzalez

May 27, 2018

Lisa Collins Gonzalez

May 27, 2018