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A Community Comes Together to Support A Beloved Member

Updated on September 19, 2012
Alicia (left) being silly with my daughter and mom daughter during one of her visits.
Alicia (left) being silly with my daughter and mom daughter during one of her visits.

The News

Alicia is in the hospital with cancer. Do you know any more about it?

A friend from my hometown had inboxed me via Facebook about a dear family friend, Alicia (Ay-lee-see-ah). I did not. I could not get in touch with her or her daughter. The small town is Vidalia, GA. The hospital St. Joseph's in Savannah.

Alicia came to Vidalia over 20 years ago. A hispanic woman, she faced many struggles socially - and overcame them graciously and lovingly. Her presence as a viable business owner, an active community player, and faithful church member - - broke down walls of prejudice and division in a small, southern community.

I met Alicia when my husband and I moved to Vidalia in 2002. We instantly had a bond. We spent time together much as you would with an Aunt. She loves my children like grandchildren, creating beautiful blankets, pillows and other items for birthdays and just because. She has visited us in our new town, some 10 hours away. We love her. She is easy to love -- because she loves and accepts everyone - right where they are.

After a few phone calls, my friend, Ann, called me with the room number. I called Alicia. Yes. The rumor was true. And, in her true selfless, always thinking of others way, asked me, barely able to speak from fatigue and sedation, to let Ann know that her daughter's prom dress was ready, and gave instructions for me to forward to our mutual friend on how to get Em's dress. Wow. That says a lot.

The Opportunity

Alicia does not have health insurance. Neither does her husband, a farmer. Ann and I began discussing how to support her.

Vidalia is a community that supports its own. Whether a birth, a house fire, death, sickness -- Vidalia's citizens have amazed me repeatedly. When Courtney Wilkes was tragically murdered Summer 2011, the outpour of support from the community was so extravaggant, news teams from Savannah, Atlanta, and even the Associated Press covered the community "Cloaked in White". Now, another of their own is hurting, and they care. Not only do they care, they put emotion into action.

Plans are underway for fundraisers. I am looking forward to seeing the overwhelming support. From over 10 hours away, I will do what I can to help. If you are in the Toombs County area, or even a stranger and would like to help this amazing woman who has selflessly given of herself to her community for over 20 years, please contact Ann at The Pal Theatre, 912.538.1700. She, as she often is found, is organizing everything. Thank you!

The Turn Out

Alicia sadly passed away before the fundraiser lunch. However, the tickets sold-out, the food ran out, and thousands were raised for Alicia's family.

Alicia was and is very much loved.

Alicia's Obituary

June 22-- Mrs. Alicia Salgado, age 67, owner of ALICIA’S DRESSMAKER in Vidalia passed away April 24th, 2012 after a brief illness. She would have celebrated her 15th Anniversary as a business owner in downtown Vidalia in May of 2012.

Alicia is survived by her husband Jose Salgado, 2 sons, Dondi Aguirre of San Antonio, TX, Dennis Aguirre of Houston, TX, 1 daughter Dionne Aguirre of Jacksonville, Fl and 1 step daughter Dina Aguirre of San Antonio, TX.

Grandchildren Deann Gonzales, Devon Valdez, DJ Aguirre, Brooke Aguirre, Dennis Aguirre, Dean Aguirre, Denyce Aguirre, Sophia Aguirre, Merrick Vanscoy & Paisley Layne Vanscoy.

She was born in San Antonio, TX on June 7, 1944. She was the oldest daughter in a family of 13. She is survived by 5 sisters & 4 brothers.

Alicia was an active member of 1st Baptist Church in Vidalia since 2001 and a member of the Water Drawers Sunday School Class.

It was shared by her family that Alicia appreciated her acceptance into the community. She had many friends and everyone that met her loved her. Alicia shared her Christian faith with all those she came in contact and she lived it daily. If you visited her shop, you quickly felt the commitment she had to serve the community…the success of her alterations shop brought her much happiness.

Dionne says, “Her customers brought much pride and joy to her life, because she came from humble beginnings; Vidalia was where that was really nurtured”. As she was looking forward to her 15th anniversary, she had scheduled the monthly COFFEE BEFORE HOURS, a year ago for May 2nd, 2012. Dionne said, “She was so cute talking about the coffee”.

Main Street Executive Director, Paula Toole stated she had planned her menu and shared that with the downtown family at the April Coffee Before Hours; we’re sure she celebrated it in HEAVEN.

A CELEBRATION OF THE LIFE…Threads of Love “fundraiser” was organized by The Pal Theatre and Main Street Office in love and appreciation for Alicia and the legacy she left for us. We would like to thank all those who contributed and help to make it a great success…a memorial contribution is being finalized for her family.

A memorial service will be held on Sunday, June 24th at 2:00 p.m. at 1st Baptist Worship Center in vidalia…everyone is invited to worship with us.


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    • breathe2travel profile image

      breathe2travel 5 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

      I added Alicia's obituary.

    • breathe2travel profile image

      breathe2travel 5 years ago from Gulf Coast, USA

      Thank you, David! :) I appreciate you reading & commenting.

    • David Warren profile image

      David Warren 5 years ago from Nevada

      Voted up and beautiful! I'm a firm believer of karma or whatever you would call it; When a person of good character needs help it will be found.