2012-01-12 / Obituaries

Helen Foster Cunha

Helen Foster Cunha, 94, of Jamestown, died Jan. 7, 2012, at Newport Hospital after a brief illness. She was the wife of the late Manuel Cunha Jr.

Born in Worcester, Mass., on June 26, 1918, she was the daughter of the late David and Edith (Masterson) Foster. Helen grew up in Providence and graduated from Hope High School. As a young woman she worked at Harris Lumber Company in Providence.

In 1942, she married Manuel Cunha Jr. and they moved to Jamestown. Helen lived in Jamestown for the next 70 years, raising her family and was a communicant of St. Mark Church. For years she was active in the Rosary Sodality at St. Mark. Soon she returned to work with a position at the Jamestown-Newport Ferry office in Jamestown. Her career then brought her to the University of Rhode Island where she spent the next 20 years working in several offices including the library, ROTC, fiscal plant, and the loans and grants office.

After her retirement, she and her husband spent winters in West Palm Beach, Fla., and enjoyed traveling extensively. Helen was proud to be living independently in her home well into her 90s, and enjoyed time at the Jamestown Senior Center.

She is survived by daughter Barbara E. Cunha of Jamestown; her nieces Janice Vadnais and Jean Amaral and nephew James Foster, all of Warwick, R.I.; and her beloved grand-dog Mickey. She was preceded in death by her brother James Foster of Warwick.

Her funeral will be held on Saturday, Jan. 14, with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 a.m. in St. John Neumann Church, 157 Middleboro Road, East Freetown, Mass. Burial will follow at 3 p.m. in St. Mark Cemetery on East Shore Road.

Memorial contributions in her name may be made to Jamestown EMS, 11 Knowles Court, Jamestown, RI 02835, or to the Jamestown Philomenian Library, 26 North Road, Jamestown, RI 02835.

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