Our Mother, Lucy Samalot (also known as Mama Lucy), of New Rochelle, NY, died on September 26, 2017 while recovering from surgery at the Schaffer Center for Extended Care in New Rochelle. She was 94.
She was born in Quebradillas, Puerto Rico on July 2, 1923 as Luz Teresa Lopez. Her parents, our maternal grandparents, were Juana Lopez Perez and Juan Lopez, also of Quebradillas.
Mama Lucy emigrated to New York City with her family at the age of 10 in 1933. According to family lore, she and her future husband Manuel Samalot passed each other in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, she heading north to NYC and he heading south to Puerto Rico. Each family was looking to start a new life in a new or familiar land. She was a talented student with a gift for language and grammer. After graduating from the Walton High School for Girls in New York she worked as an Executive Secretary for a Vice President of the Ford Motor Car Company for several years.
In January 1943, Lucy married her childhood sweetheart, Manuel (Papa Manny) Samalot, while he was on a three-day leave from the Army. They were married in the Bronx, where two of their three children were later born. In 1957 the family moved to 5 Hampton Oval, New Rochelle, where their youngest son was born a year later.
Lucy was a successful businesswoman who for over 40 years actively participated in the management of the family real estate business in the Bronx and was instrumental in it’s success. She was also active as a volunteer and fundraiser for several community service organizations. Two organizations serving primarily the Latino community in NYC, ASPIRA and the Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, were especially close to her heart.
An avid and talented gardener, her New Rochelle home’s terrace and garden were featured in an issue of “House Beautiful” in 1965.
She is survived by her three children and their families; Madelaine Samalot Marquez and her husband Roberto Marquez of Amherst MA, John Samalot and his wife Ana Trilla of Tuckahoe, NY and Steven Samalot and his wife Ming Samalot of West Hartford, CT. Lucy’s six grandchildren are Maceo Marquez and his wife Vanessa, Gabriel Marquez and his wife Siobhan Devine, Alycia and Ariana Samalot, and Lianne and Alex Samalot. Lucy’s two great grandchildren are Elena Marquez and Myles Marquez.
Lucy’s greatest pleasure was being surrounded by her family and friends. She will be missed by all who knew her.
A memorial service is scheduled for Saturday, September 30th, at Lloyd Maxcy & Sons, Inc., Beauchamp Chapel, 16 Shea Place, New Rochelle, NY from 11:00am – 1:00pm.