Hilda Esther Diaz
June 18, 1926 – March 7, 2018
Hilda Esther Diaz, 91, of Toms River passed away peacefully at home with her children on March 7, 2018. Hilda was born in Arecibo, Puerto Rico, and grew up on the family farm as the youngest of eleven children. After graduating from Colegio San Felipe, she was granted provisional certification to start her classroom career during World War II teaching first, second, and third grades before getting married to the love of her life, Raul. Soon after, they decided to move to New York City, then Brooklyn, to raise their growing family. In 1961, they moved to Toms River, Hilda completed her education, and received a B.S. in Spanish from Monmouth College. She did her student teaching and began her career in education at Toms River High School South in the early 1960’s, then taught at Toms River High School North from 1970 to 1989. She was recognized as an excellent educator by her peers and was selected Teacher of the Year as well as being made acting supervisor of the Language Department. Her devotion to her students and love of teaching was clearly a hallmark of her educational career.
Once retired, Hilda threw herself into a life of volunteering and giving to both her church and local community. She was very active in a multitude of activities for Saint Anthony Claret Church in Lakewood, which serves the Hispanic population of the area. She was a member of the Parish Council and served as its president for several years, as well as vice-president of the Saint Vincent de Paul Society, which aids local residents with financial issues. Hilda was a Eucharistic Minister, a CCD teacher, worked tirelessly for Saint Anthony’s Food Panty and Christmas toy sales, and lent her energy to the Governor’s Council on Aging for Ocean County for several years. Hilda also volunteered at the Treasure Chest, a thrift store affiliated with Community Medical Center in Toms River. She was known for her activism, devotion to her church, her sense of humor, love of cooking, and great love for her family and friends.
Hilda was predeceased by both her parents, all of her siblings, and her beloved husband, Raul R. Diaz, Sr. She is survived by her son, Raul R. Diaz, Jr. of Beachwood, her daughter, Rosa A. Libertini and son-in-law, Frank L. Libertini of Howell, grandsons Rubin Diaz of Smyrna Beach, Florida, Rene Diaz of Charleston, South Carolina, Christopher Libertini of Lyndhurst, New Jersey, granddaughter Randall Libertini of San Diego, California, and great granddaughter Tatum Diaz of Smyrna Beach, Florida, as well as numerous nieces, nephews and friends. Visiting will be held Monday, March 12, 2018 from 2:00 - 4:00 & 7:00 - 9:00 PM at Anderson & Campbell Funeral Home, 703 Main St. Toms River. A Funeral Mass to celebrate Hilda’s life will be held Tuesday, 10:30 AM at St. Anthony Claret Church, 780 Ocean Ave. (Rt. 88), Lakewood. Burial will follow at St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Toms River. Family and friends are invited to visit www.andersonandcampbell.com to leave tributes to her family.
- Afternoon Visitation Monday, March 12, 2018
- Evening Visitation Monday, March 12, 2018
- Funeral Service Tuesday, March 13, 2018
- Committal Service Tuesday, March 13, 2018
Hilda Esther Diaz
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March 16, 2018
May the God of all comfort give the family and friends the strengths you need in these difficult times.
2 Corinthians 1: 3-4
March 12, 2018
Hilda Diaz was a pleasure to know. Her charming personality exuded warmth, friendliness and wisdom. I knew her during her teaching years at Toms River High School North, and also remember her wonderful sense of humor and lovely smile. May she rest in peace. My condolences to the family.
TRHSN Art Teacher (Retired 1999)
March 12, 2018
Mr. and Mrs. Diaz were both an inspiration to me as a child in South Toms River. We lived across the street (Fitzgerald's). The Diaz's were always kind, generous, friendly, and had the best lawn in the neighborhood. My parents (Bob and Mary Jane) always spoke highly of Ray and Hilda. I remember many neighborhood parties occurring at the Diaz home, with the adults upstairs and the children downstairs in the basement.
I appreciate everything I learned from Mr. and Mrs. Diaz. I appreciate the friendship they extended to our family, and am very grateful that they were part of my childhood.
Donna Fitzgerald Walter
March 10, 2018
Hilda was my dad's youngest paternal auntie. They were practically the same age. I remembered spending time with Hilda and Raul when they visited our island on vacations. My mom, Dora, always remembers Hilda and Raul with great love and respect. I will always remember her smile and upbeat spirit. Rest in Peace Titi Hilda.
March 10, 2018
I had the pleasure of working with Hilda for several years at Toms River High School North. She brought the values of hard work and honesty to her classes; values which she learned growing up in a large family and striving to complete her education. Hilda will be remembered as a principled and caring teacher who could serve as a role model for today’s young educators. My condolences to Raul and her family. She will be long-remembered and missed. Ron Willetts
March 8, 2018
Hilda was a remarkable person. She was a leader, and very giving of herself.
She will be missed by all of us. But I'm sure she is finally in the arms of our Lord and with her beloved husband, Raul.