Ana America Brito ‘Mama’ 1926 – 2020

 

Ana America Brito, 93 - A woman of unshakable faith, loving wife to Francisco Brito, beloved mother, a champion of English literacy and of her church community.  Ana died of natural causes, peacefully in her sleep, on June 5, 2020.  

 

Ana was born in Taguasco, Cuba on September 27, 1926 to Amador Camacho Bonachea and Consuelo Gonzalez Ferrer.  She was a proud alumna of La Progresiva de Cardenas y Varadero and served as a math teacher in Cuba.  With strength, courage and the depths of faith, joy and love they shared for their family, Ana and Francisco bravely fled the Cuban Revolution in 1968 to come to the United States with their four daughters and two grandsons.

 

As an educator, Ana knew that success for immigrants in this country must begin with the mastery of language, so in 1985, she founded Ayuda Especial at her beloved United Methodist Church in Montgomery County, MD.  The program served local immigrants learning English and was originally based at the

Bethesda United Methodist Church and later moved to its current location at the Epworth United Methodist Church in Gaithersburg. In 2014, the nearly thirty-year program was succeeded by the Ana A. Brito Foundation (AABFI), a non-profit foundation launched to continue Ana’s legacy of support and commitment to the local community.

Ana instilled lessons of love of God, courage, strength, tenacity, kindness, and education in her family and in those she touched. Her daughters, grandchildren, and great grandchildren vividly remember those lessons and they are an extension of her values and teachings.  Her grandchildren wrote about Ana (affectionately known to them as “Mama”), “As the leader of our family and champion of the local community, Mama brought joy and happiness to everything and everyone around her.  Like a saint with a heavenly directive, Mama was blessed with an unconditional love for everyone she encountered.  She had a zest for life, appreciating all things no matter how big or small. The pure joy and elatedness she exhibited when she saw you, made one feel like the most important person in the world. She would shower you with compliments and rave about how wonderful you are, with all sincerity. Mama always seemed to have just the words we needed to lift our spirits, bring a smile, and provide wisdom to stay the right course in life.  She was always a bright light in this world, and we love and miss her. Mama was a role model and a standard for her family in Cuba whom she loved dearly.”

 

Her husband Francisco predeceased her in 1977. Ana is survived by her four daughters Ana (Chuck) Stein, Marta (Manuel) Perez, Elizabeth (James) Austin, Odalis (Richard) Kuntz, her grandchildren Jeremy (Tracy) Stein, Carlos Stein, David (Winter) Perez, Cristina L. Perez, Michael Austin, Lauren (Matt) Kough, Allison (Mike) Kafka, Oliver (Caroline) Kuntz, Erin E. Kuntz and her great grandchildren Jeremy Jr., Mackenzie, Ginger, Alex, Ashton, Theodore, Louisa, Jackson and Corrine.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Ana A. Brito Foundation www.aabfi.org