SWAMPSCOTT – Carmen P. Roche (nee Paredes Gonzalez), 66. “Carmen” of Swampscott, MA, passed away on July 18, 2020. Carmen waged a truly brave and courageous battle against pancreatic cancer for 18-months but succumbed to the illness on July 18th, 2020.
Juana del Carmen Paredes Gonzalez was born on November 5, 1953 in Angol, a city in Southern Chile. Carmen was the third of six children – four girls and two boys, raised on a farmhouse in Southern Chile. Sadly, her two brothers, Ricardo and Rene, also passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2013.
Carmen Roche’s life was an immigrant success story. She moved to America 35-years ago in search of a better life and economic circumstances than available at the time in Chile. She met her husband, Richard, 32-years ago on a flight from Pittsburgh, PA, to New York, NY. After a whirlwind and long-distance romance, they married in 1990 and had two wonderful sons.
As a proud Latina, Carmen strongly identified with her Chilean heritage and Hispanic culture. But Carmen became a United States citizen in 2002 after 9-11 because she was so impressed with how the American people came together and responded so well to the tragic events of that infamous day.
In each and every life endeavor Carmen was a success – as a mother, a star employee at Target-St. Louis Park, MN, homemaker, handywoman and gardener at their homes in New Jersey, Minneapolis and Swampscott. She was incredibly generous of her time and financial resources to both her family in Chile and in the United States.
Carmen is survived by her husband, Richard (Rick) Roche, and their two devoted sons, Sean Patrick Roche, and Andrew James Roche, and her loving daughter-in-law, Elaina Donofrio Roche. Carmen is survived by three sisters in Chile, her close cousin, Carmen Gloria of San Diego, CA, and her aunt, Carmen Falce, of Pittsburgh, PA.
In addition, she’s survived by Rick’s six siblings, their spouses, 14 nephews and nieces in the U.S., 12 nephews and nieces in Chile, including our beloved nephew, Patricio Paredes, who lived with Carmen’s immediate family in America for five years.
Carmen will be sadly missed by some of the greatest neighbors in the world (4100 block Zenith Ave., Linden Hills) and Chilenos en Minnesota amigos. Target St. Louis Park Store colleagues, in particular - Kari Lynn Jacobson, and Guest Return customers and friends and Swampscott Senior Center buddies and neighbors will surely miss Carmen’s wicked sense of humor, smile and unique “Carmenisms” - Target co-workers, you know what we mean- :)
One of Carmen’s close friends, Teresa Palacios Olsen said, “Someone so special can never be forgotten”. Her Latina pride, generosity, warmth and sunny disposition will be forever missed but never forgotten. Carmen Paredes Roche rose from humble beginnings to lead a joyous and full life cut short by pancreatic cancer. Her life epitomized an immigrant success story at contributing to the fabric of America -- still the world’s melting pot! Her husband and sons, Sean and Andrew are heartbroken at the loss of their Mother and their Dad’s Best Friend.
ARRANGEMENTS: A private visitation ceremony and “Celebration of Carmen’s Life” will be held at the O’Donnell Funeral Home, 84 Washington Sq., (at Salem Common) in Salem, MA. Attendance by invitation only. Carmen’s family asks that in lieu of flowers that contributions be made in her memory to one of two organizations. Gifts may be made in memory of Carmen Paredes Roche to support cancer research and patient care at: Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA 02284 or online at www.dana-farber.org/gift - Or, gifts may be made to the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation (PAIR) Project. PAIR provides free legal services to asylum seekers and promotes the rights of detained immigrants. Mail your gift, payable to "PAIR Project," in memory of Carmen Paredes Roche to: 98 North Washington Street, Suite 106, Boston, MA 02114 or donate online at: https://pairproject.networkforgood.com/projects/35999-online-giving
Sharing written remembrances and condolences, during this time will be essential in helping Carmen’s family reminisce, celebrate and heal. We encourage you to share your memories by visiting her eternal tribute at www.odonnellfuneralservice.com.
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