Our beloved Justina was born to Ramon Laboy and Zoila Marquez on May 24th, 1942 in the town od Arroyo on the beautiful Island of puerto Rico. At the age of 17 Justina migrated to Brooklyn New York to live with her two older sisters, Julia and Juevencia. Coincidently, while shopping at a popular market in Brooklyn, she ran into her best friend since 3rd grade, Siza. The two made plans to reunite that evening. During that gathering, her best friend introduced her to her boyfriend's brother (William). The two married in 1962 and from that union came three children, William, Edwin and Mildred.
Justina loved her family. She enjoyed being a mother and a wife. She natured not only her own two kids but a stepdaughter Saury Maria as well. Her step daughter joined Justina at the age of 16. Two years later her stepdaughter lost her mother and my mother took in her two youngest siblings as well. Her heart was made of gold and she was loved by all.
When she walked into a room her presence was felt. If I had to describe it, I would use the word "storm'. She was happy, loud, caring, dancing, singing all of those things hapening at once. As a child I remember how people opened their doors and lit up at the mere sight of her. Gayherings were the best and whenever she arrived the chrowd would begin to cheer and shout :"The party is now beginning!" "Tini is here!". She was always welcomed with warm hugs and smiles because it's what she brought to all. All the fear of being yourself would disappear, becasue she brought out the best in you, it was okay to have fun!
I can stand here and talk about education and life achievements but that would not have defined my mother. It would nit be what people knew and loved about her. It was her love of all, her caring ways, her beautiful bright smile, her loud voice, her fun energy, her fearless daring ways and the joy she brought everyone. These are the things that impacted everyone who knew her. Taking three trains to make sure that her granddaughter who had a 101 fever did not have to be wrapped up to go outside to get the medicine she needed. Cooking for the neighbor who worked until 9pm and didn't have the time to make a hot meal for her children. Caring for the sick neighbor for 6 weeks although she herself didn't feel good. In a middle of a party gathering all the children and serving them a plate of food as she wanted to make sure that they too had something to eat. Leaving her home in Puerto Rico and spending 7 straight days in a hospital chair next to her life long best friend in her final days. Telling me from her dying bed that she has two envelopes in her top draw that need to be given to my husband's sister's kids, the envelopes were Christmas gifts. That's the woman that people knew, all these things were the mark she made in this world and is how she should be remembered.
Justina Ubiles, my Mom, was a tough lady. She never allowed her sickness to define who she was. In spite of her difficulties, my Mom insisted on attending Christ Church and loved her new church family. She continued to sing, dance, cook, and be happy. She remained proud and tough to the very end and she spent her last days saying whatever she wanted. She recognized every visitor and the last thing she did before closing her eyes for good was to eat a meal and listen to slasa music.
Justina is survived by her husband William Ubilies, her children, William Ubiles, Mildred Ubiles and Saury Ubiles, her grandchildren, Luis Soto, Wilfredo Soto, Vilma Soto, William Ubiles, Anthony Williams, Edwin Ubiles, Jessica Ubiles, Terrance Ubiles, Takheem Ubiles, Alexa Phillip, Kyle Ubiles, great grandchildren, Anthony Williams, Jr., Desire Ubiles, Thalia, Leila Ubiles, Leah Williams, Shawne Ubiles, Kobe Williams, Mia Williams, Edwin Ubiles, Nashalie Reyes, Isaura Reyes, Rosalia Reyes, her sister Juevencia Laboy and brother Julio Laboy along with many loving nieces and nephews.
On January 26th, Justina was called home to be with the Lord. During her last hours she was surrounded by her loving husband and family. We will miss her dearly but we know we all will someday see her again.
- written by Mildred Ubiles