On the warm and sunny afternoon of May 14th, 2021, the beautiful matriarch of our family reached the end of her incredible life journey at age 101; she passed away peacefully at home surrounded by loving family. Words cannot properly express what she meant to all of us or capture the void she will leave in our lives and in our hearts, forever.
Helena Augusta Da Silva or as we knew her, Granny, Avó, and Mãe was born on the island of Faial, Azores and was the youngest of 14 children. She married Francisco (Alberto) da Silva and had 3 daughters: Fatima, Elsa, and Cidalia. In 1967, she and her husband immigrated to Canada to join her daughter Fatima and son-in-law, Manuel Toste to be close to the family and help raise the kids.
Helena (Avó) was an incredibly loving and nurturing grandmother to Helen (James), Elizabeth (Jim), Richard (Wendy), Paul (Paula), Lori (Dimitre), Nidia (John) and Elizabeth (Mark), and great-grandmother to Brianna, Dylan, Marcus, Malena, Marisa, Megan, Athena, Lily and Denver. Besides spending time with family, Helena loved strawberry picking, eating pizza with her grandkids, visiting the casino in Niagara to play slots, seeing the Christmas lights in Niagara Falls, eating at Red Lobster, playing her Portuguese guitar, scratching crossword lottery tickets, and taking long drives along the lakeshore with her daughters.
After the death of her oldest daughter Fatima in 2018, Helena lived with her daughter Elsa, who was the best possible caregiver anyone could ask for. Elsa, with the support of her sister Cidalia and other family members, worked tirelessly to ensure Helena got the same loving care she always gave others. It truly takes a village.
We were so blessed to have our grandmother with us for as long as we did. Her warm, loving smile and the countless memories she left us with, will be treasured forever. Holding her in our hearts until we can hold her again in heaven.
May God grant her eternal peace; we love you.
Before passing away, Fatima Toste, her oldest daughter, worked tirelessly to finish creating an e book as a tribute to her mother's life. It's saved on this site in the Media tab under folder "Tribute to Helena Da Silva". The tribute is written in Portuguese but contains beautiful photos of her life experiences, please review it if you can.
Elizabeth Saunders & Richard Toste
Private Family Funeral & Burial
(The family wishes this to be a private event.)
Porter & Turner Neweduk-Erin Mills Chapel & St. Marys Cemetery - Mississauga, ON