Rose Marie Cunha
December 25, 1923 – October 30, 2018
With a smile remaining upon her face, Rose Marie Cunha passed away peacefully at home (where she lived with her son), from natural causes Tuesday, October 30, 2018. She was 94 years old, and would have been 95 on Christmas day.
Born in Lake Charles, Louisiana on December 25, 1923. She was the second daughter to be born to George and Mary Lusco. Her mother told her that she was her Christmas dolly, and Dolly is what she called her throughout her life. When she was just an infant, her family moved to Wastsonville, CA where she grew up with her four sisters, three of them now deceased; Sara Marini, Josephine Bloomquist, and Virginia George. Rose is survived by her younger sister, Maryann Malcolm of Watsonville.
While Rose was attending Watsonville High School, she sometimes would peer out the window from an upper story and see her future husband, the love of her life, working across the street at Martinelli’s Apple Cider Company. In 1943, Rose and Alfred E. Cunha Sr. were married in Pratt, Kansas where he was in the Army Air Corps, stationed at the Pratt Army Field. In 1975, Rose lost her husband to cancer, and she never remarried. She continued her life in Salinas, CA and moved to Redding in 1988.
Rose is survived by her son, Alfred E. Cunha Jr., and her daughter, Diana Marie Rivera (Joseph), both of Redding. She had three grandchildren; Dina Rose Gray (Matt) of Brooklyn, New York, Gina Marie Johnson (Jake) of Redding, and Joseph E. Rivera II (Lisa) of San Francisco. Sophie Rose Gray was Rose’s first great grandchild, followed by Joseph Rivera III, and Charlotte April Rivera. Rose also had a number of nieces and nephews in Watsonville and Gilroy, CA.
Rose loved flowers and gardening. Having a green thumb, even talking to her plants, she could truly be called the flower whisperer. She was a proud collector of angels, frogs, turtles, and porcelain dolls. Rose would always have on her happy face when she was at the casino or listening to Italian music. She especially enjoyed eating vanilla ice cream, orange cupcakes, hash browns, and zucchini. She loved the color pink, and her favorite flowers were pink roses.
Rose was loved by everyone who knew her, and she will be missed dearly. Remembered by the joy, humor, her loving smiles, and the smiles that she brought, her captivating, angel baby-brown eyes and warm, precious memories that will now live in our hearts forever. Her garden on earth now has one less Ross, and God’s garden in Heaven now has one more.
A celebration of life will be held at Lawncrest Chapel, 1522 East Cypress Ave. in Redding, CA on Thursday, November 8, 2018. Services will begin at 11:00am with a luncheon reception to follow directly after, also at Lawncrest Chapel.
There will also be a small service at the Garden of Memories in Salinas, CA on Friday, November 16, 2018 where Rose will be laid to rest next to her husband in the mausoleum.
- Funeral Service Thursday, November 8, 2018
- Graveside Service Friday, November 16, 2018