Elena Hall died December 12, 2022 at age 97 after a long, hard battle with Alzheimer’s. She joins those who preceded her in death – her loving husband of 60 years, Launcelot [Miguel] Hall, her parents Luis and Ena Folkes, brother Samuel Folkes, sisters Hilda Folkes and Maria Luisa Brinas, great niece Roxanna Perez. She is survived by her daughters Elia Espuet and Maritza Hall (Amanda Smith), her niece Sira Perez (Fernando Perez II), her nephew Luis Folkes, her grandchildren Reina Marielena Powell and Melanie Powell-Satchwell, along with her great-grandchildren Ralph Irizzary and Jasmine Satchwell, and great-nephew Fernando Perez III.
The two most important days in our lives are the day you are born and the day you find out why. Those of us who are lucky enough, find out in time to live out that ‘why’, to live out our purpose. Elena always seemed to know her purpose, she lived life with purpose. Everything and everyone she touched knew this was a woman with purpose. In the many roles she served: mother, daughter, sister, wife, friend, homemaker, neighbor, cook. Family, friends, neighbors, even those who only had chance encounters with her, felt it. She did everything with purpose.
Born in Guantanamo, Cuba where she met and married her husband Miguel and later together, they stated a joint purpose “we are getting our girls out of this communist place and creating opportunities for our family by any means necessary.” A series of intentional steps followed which led to a new life of freedom in America for their two daughters and for several members of their extended family, all of whom found a haven in the Hall family home as they began their new lives of freedom.
The Halls established themselves as members of communities – their neighborhood community in Brooklyn, New York, their church community at Epiphany Lutheran, and the vibrant community of New York Cuban fellow exiles where they created many fond memories of love and laughter for so many – at the epicenter was Elena, who always had a delicious Cuban meal, a café con leche or espresso, and a deck of cards for anyone willing to play a round or two. Elena was an accomplished seamstress and member of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union of New York. After 40+ years in NY, she and Miguel retired to Orlando, FL where their sunsetting years were shortened by Miguel’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis and his passing in 2010 and, eventually, Elena’s own Alzheimer’s diagnosis. Elena spent the final 8 years of her life receiving needed ongoing care by many loving hands in the home of her daughter and daughter-in-law in New Jersey. Although Alzheimer’s eventually stole her voice, she remained dignified and always expressive – because if you listened carefully enough you could understand her even when she was not speaking.
In remembrance of Elena Hall, a celebration of life service will be held at Epiphany Lutheran Church, 721 Lincoln Place, Brooklyn, NY 11216. Visitation & Viewing 12:00-2:00pm, Memorial Service 2:00pm, Coffee Hour and Fellowship immediately following the service.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to: Epiphany Lutheran Church & School, 721 Lincoln Place, Brooklyn, NY 11216.
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