Luisa Altagracia Navarro O’Brien was devoted to her family. She was a much loved wife, mother, sister, aunt, and friend. Her wish to spend her last days at home with all those she loved demonstrated her strong sense of family devotion. Luisa passed away from complications due to lung cancer on the 24th of July with her last days wishes fulfilled by those who loved her as deeply as she loved them.
Luisa immigrated to Brooklyn, New York from the Dominican Republic with her siblings Susana, Martin, and Miguel in 1967 when she was 10 years old. Living with their single mom she learned the English language, acquired the discipline of hard work, developed a strong devotion to family, and established life-long friendships with others in similar circumstances growing up in the city.
Luisa and her family were proud that, as a single mother, she completed her Medical Assistant certification and worked for 27 years as a phlebotomist. The fact that Luisa continued to do her work for 18 years and raise a family while suffering from a progressive autoimmune disease of myositis, that steadily deteriorated her muscular strength, was described by her doctor recently as “astonishing” and is a particular source of admiration and pride for us all.
Left behind to celebrate and forever treasure the gift of Luisa’s life are: her husband of 23 years Michael J. O’Brien, their son Michael Navarro O’Brien, their daughter Amber Navarro O’Brien, sister and brother in law Susana and Kevin Cochrane, brother and fiancé Miguel Cabrera and Christine Flammia, nieces Betzabeth Sanchez, Tanya Cabrera, nephews Alex Cabrera, Martin Cabrera. Step Grandchildren Morgan and Ryker O’Brien. Life-long special friends the family of Iris & Tony Capellan, and the Sanchez family.
A celebration of Luisa’s life will be held on Sunday, 1 August, at 2 PM at the Erickson – Hansen Funeral Home of Berlin CT 06037 (111 Chamberlin Highway). The family will receive and greet visitors until 3 PM followed by a brief memorial service. In lieu of flowers, donations in Luisa’s memory can be made online to The Church Street Eats Feeding Program at https://www.cccathedral.org or mailed directly to 45 Church Street, Hartford, CT 06107.
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