Maria Helena (Grave) Goncalves, 72, of Newington, beloved wife of Antonio Goncalves, died September 26, 2019 at Hartford Hospital after a brief illness. Maria Helena was born on November 1, 1946 in Mira De Aire, Portugal. As a young girl she came to the U.S. with her mother and brother. She brought with her a strong sense of family, community, and giving of herself that would form the foundation of her life and will be her legacy for many that knew her.
Her family settled in the Hartford area and it was here she would meet Tony, the love of her life. As fortune would have it, two kids raised just a few miles from each other,would cross an ocean, settle in the same town, and fall in love.
Maria Helena gave of herself unconditionally and was a rock of support for so many she touched through out her life. She had an unshakable strength of conviction that she never hid. In her moments of relaxation she was an avid reader and especially enjoyed her summers in Portugal.
She was a graduateof Hartford Public High School and a retiree of the Town of West Hartford. She was a devout parishioner at Holy Spirit Church in Newington as well as Our Lady of Fatima in Hartford. Family, Faith, and Friends were the cornerstones of Maria Helena’s life.
Aside from her beloved husband, she is survived by her daughter and son-in-law, Tamara and Rick Tousignant, her son and daughter-in-law, Michael and Desiree Goncalves, her dear grandchildren, Alexandra, Jack, and William Tousignant, and Abigail, Samuel, and Marion Goncalves. She is also survived by step-siblings and in-laws, Clarise Grave, Delores and Henry Chipelo, Maria Lurdes Goncalves, Adelia and Manuel Sousa, and Adelaide Gonsalves as well as many nieces and nephews. She had many cousins, whom she regarded as her best friends.
She was predeceased by her mother and step-father, Maria and Jack Valinho, and her brother John Grave and step-brother Jack Valinho.
Calling hours will be held at Sheehan Hilborn Breen Funeral Home, 1084 New Britain Ave, West Hartford on Sunday, September 29th from 4:00-7:00 pm. A funeral will be held on Monday, September 30th at 10:00 am, beginning with mass of Christian burial at Our Lady of Fatima Church in Hartford. Entombment will follow in Cedar Hill Cemetery, Hartford. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation,76 Batterson Park Rd #2565, Farmington, CT 06032 . Online condolences may be made at www.SheehanHilbornBreen.com