Rebeca Sims, 98, of Punta Gorda, Fla., passed away Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013.
She was born Jan., 20, 1914, in Santiago, Chile.
She married Claudio Avendano prominent tailor in Santiago, Chile. In 1952, Rebeca and the family moved to the United States and settled in Miami, Fla. From there they all eventually moved to Asheville, N.C. and then eventually moving to Atlanta, Ga., where her husband opened a popular tailor shop in Lennox Square.
After her divorce from Claudio, she continued to live in Atlanta often seen in her yard in Atlanta caring for her plants and flowers which she enjoyed her entire life. Independent and resourceful Rebeca once enlarged the basement of her home by manually removing the soil with shovel and wheelbarrow.
In 1994, she met Ben Sims of Atlanta through introduction by her grandson, Chris Alonso, who was working for Ben as a grounds keeper while attending college. It was love at first sight for Mr. Sims and Rebeca and they were married shortly thereafter. They spent many happy days travelling in South America and Europe. Both avid gardeners, they enjoyed the diversity and abundance of plant life throughout their many travels and continuing to support the many horticultural organizations in and around Atlanta.
As they became older they moved to Punta Gorda to be closer to her daughter, Kena and her husband, Manuel. Ben passed away in 2006 and Rebeca eventually moved to the home of her daughter and son-in-law.
Right to the end she had a smile for her grandchildren that would light up a room. A smile and a look of wonder that embodied her zest for life. Rebeca loved playing cards with the family and had an impressive competitive spirit. She was never short on humor and loved to crack a joke to make us laugh.
With her background and love for gardens her final years seemed to be very much at peace with her enjoyment of the garden of her final home on the Peace River. I therefore ask you all in fond memory of Rebeca, when you see a beautiful plant or flower think of her, a life well lived and a force of nature in her own right; she would just love that.
Rebeca leaves three children; daughters, Carmen (Mark) Wilson of Pinehurst, N.C. and Kena (Manuel) Alonso of Punta Gorda; son, Claudio Avendano of Atlanta; six grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild.
There will be a graveside service at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013 at the Fort Ogden Cemetery in Florida. A reception will follow at the Alonso’s home 4:30 p.m. at 3656 Peace River Drive, Punta Gorda or call for directions 941-979-8184. Please visit in online tribute for Rebeca Sims at www.kays-ponger.com.
Arrangements are by Kays-Ponger & Uselton Funeral Homes.