Mrs. Beatrice Natalie Silvia was born on Christmas Day, 1925, in New Bedford. She was the daughter of Joseph and Louise (Lesser) da Lomba Perete. Mrs. Silvia died peacefully at her home in Vineyard Haven on July 6 after a lengthy illness.
Mrs. Silvia attended school in New Bedford and graduated from New Bedford High School. In addition, she continued her education in business school in New Bedford, which proved to be an asset to her husband and herself.
In 1949 she married Theophilus M. Silvia Jr. (better known on Martha’s Vineyard as T.M.). After her marriage to T.M., she settled at the Silvia family home on Pine Street. This gracious city woman quickly became accustomed to working alongside her mother-in-law in the family vegetable farm and helping wherever she could. A few years after taking up residence in Vineyard Haven, T.M. and Beatrice Silvia built a home next to the family home, where lovingly she lived the next 53 years of her life. There she raised her children and enjoyed the beauty and serenity of her beloved Martha’s Vineyard.
Raising her children, Stephen, T.M. Ill, and Michelle, was her primary love. She was truly a family oriented person and continued through the years to help with the family business as well as to help her husband to go into business. They established T.M.S., The Modern System of Plumbing and operated out of their home for 40 years. While Mr. Silvia was out in the field, Mrs. Silvia conducted the day-to-day operations of the office. In addition, she created a boutique catering business for selected clients during the summer months. The income from her business was helped finance her children’s educations. As her children became older, married, and left home, her attention turned to her beloved grandchildren.
Mrs. Silvia gave much to the community she loved and was always eager to help a neighbor or relative in need. Children of the neighborhood would routinely visit Aunt Beatty and receive one of her cookies. Guests would be assured of a warm welcome and superb food. Mrs. Silvia was truly a gracious hostess.
Her legacy was also that of being civic minded. She helped in the efforts to build St. Augustine’s Church, of which she was a communicant as well as past president of the guild. Mrs. Silvia served as a teacher of Catholic Christian Doctrine. Her work for the church was recognized and she received the prestigious Marian Medal of Honor by the Bishop of Fall River. Mrs. Silvia was a past President of the Legion Post 257 Auxiliary where she truly enjoyed the camaraderie of the veterans and their spouses. She was a member of the Neighborhood Convention, and looked forward to the monthly meetings. She and her husband were active in town affairs and she served on the Board of Registrars for several years for the town of Tisbury. The aforementioned activities demonstrated that she was a lady of determination, endurance, and compassion for her beloved community.
She is survived by her three children, two sons: Stephen and T.M. III of Vineyard Haven, and daughter Michelle Videtto of Largo, Fla.; seven grandchildren: Timothy, Christopher and Jenna Silvia, Gregory, Jeremy, and Benjamin Videtto, and Daniel Manning. She was preceded in death by her husband T.M. Silvia Jr., her parents, and brother Joseph Lombard of New Bedford. She leaves to cherish her memory three sisters, Marjory White of Stoughton, Estelle Barboza and Elinor Soares of New Bedford, several nieces and nephews, and many friends.
Her mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Monday, July 12, at 11 am in St. Augustine’s Church, located on Franklin Street in Vineyard Haven, followed by burial in the Oak Grove Cemetery in Vineyard Haven. Visiting hours will be held on Sunday, July 11, from 5 to 8 pm in the Chapman, Cole & Gleason Funeral Home, located on the Edgartown-Vineyard Haven Road in Oak Bluffs.