Hildegard Torruella, 90, of Prince George, Virginia, after a period of declining health, gained her heavenly wings on December 18, 2023. Born and raised in Germany, Hildegard’s lifelong mantra of, ‘If you put your mind to it, you can overcome anything!’ grew through her strong Catholic upbringing and the many harsh experiences she had as she and her family survived bombings, loss, and displacement during WWII. After completing her public education, Hildegard followed in the footsteps of her maternal grandmother and trained as a milliner (hat maker) and eventually was awarded the recognition as the premier milliner of her region. While working on creating hat designs, she also picked up a retail job at the US Army base in her hometown of Schweinfurt, Germany where she met and eventually married the love of her life, Marcelino Torruella. Leaving her homeland and traveling to the United States with her Puerto Rican husband, Hildegard grew their family as she learned about American cultures at the different duty stations to which her husband was assigned. In 1966, her family of seven landed at Fort Lee, Virginia. Her heart for giving shone through as Hildegard became a Girl Scout leader at the base in 1967. She served not only as a leader but also as a member of the council until 1973. Adding to her volunteer services, she engaged her talents with the St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church for many years in a variety of capacities including serving as a CCD teacher. During the summers, she acquired passes to the NCO Club swimming pool where she helped her children hone their swimming skills and she also spent many seasons as a ‘Ft. Lee Sports Mom’ as she supported her girls in softball and her boys in baseball and football. In 1972 she took her retail experience to Fort Lee and put it to use as she became an employee of first, the PX and then Military Clothing Sales. Reentering the workforce after such a long absence was a challenging task for this seamstress fashionista. Unsatisfied with her current ‘mom’ wardrobe, the night before her first day of work, she created an outfit to wear. This continued for many nights until she had a wardrobe that satisfied her desire to be both professional and fashionable. She also shared her expertise as a seamstress with the customers at the PX by creating outfits for the mannequins in the sewing department. This led to her quickly becoming the head of that department. Her expertise was acknowledged, and advice was sought out by many customers even after she retired. After more than 20 years with the PX, she retired as a retail manager and became a member of the AAFES retirees organization, serving on their board and enjoying the fellowship of other retirees. At this point in her retired life, she was called many names and enjoyed the uniqueness of each role. As Honey she spent her time playing cards with and caring for her ailing husband. As Mom, she enjoyed visiting with her children and as Oma, the title she cherished the most, she spent time passing on her knowledge and creating memories with her fifteen grandchildren and thirty-four great grandchildren, as well as the many many friends they brought along. As Hildegard, she enjoyed the Kaffee Klatsch gatherings with her friends, where many stories were told, fresh brewed coffee was enjoyed, and some of the best tasting homemade desserts were shared. Hildegard also enjoyed visits with friends and her very dear neighbors. The hallmark of all these relationships she forged was the laughter she elicited through her wit, and the ability to enchant her audience with her unparalleled storytelling. All who knew and loved her would agree that her heart was genuine and her love for others was unmatched. In addition to her parents, sisters, and brother; she was preceded in death by her husband of nearly 57 years, Marcelino Torruella Sr, her sons Jose’ and Luis, and her great-granddaughter Savannah. Cherishing her in their memories are her three daughters, Carmen Berestecky of Killeen, Texas, Petra Torruella-Meyers (Kenny) of Petersburg, Virginia, and Maria Torruella of Prince George, Virginia; and her son, Marcelino Torruella Jr. (Roswitha) of Loxstedt, Germany. Her grandchildren are Marisa Berestecky and family, Jonathan Berestecky (Sarah) and family, Christopher Berestecky (Katie) and family, Katharina Wade (Rex) and family, Kenny Meyers (Hasheen), Matthew Torruella (Cindy) and family, Michael Meyers and family, Laura Meyers and family, Tony Griffin and family, Barry Griffin (Yanna) and family, Joseph Torruella (Jessica) and family, Carleigh Edwards (Brian) and family, Jennifer Voskoboynik (Feliks) and family, Patricia Torruella (Jose’) and family, and Emily Torruella. Not to be left out are the legion of extended family and a lifetime of beloved friends who gained a place in Hildegard’s heart. She was loved by many and will forever more be greatly missed. A funeral mass will be held 11:00 a.m. Tuesday, January 9, 2024 at the Memorial Chapel at Fort Gregg-Adams, Virginia 23801. Interment will follow at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday at the Virginia Veterans Cemetery at Amelia 10300 Pridesville Rd, Amelia Court House, Virginia 23002. The family will receive friends Monday, January 8, 2024 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at the Crater Road Chapel of E. Alvin Small Funeral Homes and Crematory 3935 S. Crater Road Petersburg, Virginia 23805. Please review the military requirements to enter Fort Gregg- Adams for attending the service https://home.army.mil/greggadams/access. Condolences may be registered at www.ealvinsmall.com.
Tuesday, January 9, 2024
Starts at 2:00 pm (Eastern time)
Virginia Veterans Cemetery at Amelia