Matilde Haide Lopez-Atkinson, age 92, of Elizabethtown went to her eternal home on Monday, September 12, 2022. She was born in Jipijapa Manabi, Ecuador on February 13, 1930, to the late Gumercindo Lopez and Ines Baque.
Matilde leaves behind two daughters, Anne Martha Atkinson Midyette of Elizabethtown, and Patricia Atkinson Acevedo (Ovidio Acevedo), goddaughter/niece, Flor Alava of Ecuador, and three grandchildren Robert Wesley Atkinson, Christian Alexander Midyette, and Adam Gabriel Midyette. She was preceded in death by her parents, her husband, Robert Wiley Atkinson, and ten siblings, Bolivar, Guillermo, Lucciola, Leticia, Esther, Rosita, Margarita, Diosa, Noemi, and Rosa Lilyam.
Matilde was an elegant, sassy, and smart lady. When she came to the United States, she was unable to speak English or even drive a car. Her brother-in-law Austin and wife Peggy Atkinson spent many hours with her just doing daily activities and teaching her how to speak the language. With much determination and laughter, she also learned to drive with the help of Peggy.
Matilde’s family was everything to her. She did what she could to provide and keep them all together. She loved to sew and had received a degree in tailoring from the Catholic Convent taught by nuns while in Ecuador. After the passing of her husband, Robert W. Atkinson in 1970, Matilde went to work to provide for her family. She worked at Elizabethtown Lingerie and then at the Veeder Root plant until her retirement. Matilde and her daughters were members of Our Lady of the Snows Church and a member of the American Business Women Association in the 70’s.
Matilde’s grandchildren stole her heart right from birth. She would crawl through glass to give her babies a treat. She worked hard to keep her family close to God. They were never allowed to leave her home without her giving them “The Blessing”. She spent a lifetime covering them with prayers. Matilde also had a way with animals. Over the years, she had many pets including fish, birds, and dogs. She adored them all, especially her little Jack Russell Terrier, Lily. A selfless mother, grandmother and friend who loved unconditionally and will be missed for an eternity.
The family will receive friends from 6-8 pm on Thursday, September 22, 2022, at the Bladen Gaskins Funeral Home in Elizabethtown. A funeral service will be held at 12:00 pm on Friday, September 23, 2022, at the St. Michaels Archangel Catholic Church in Fayetteville. Burial will follow the services in the Bladen Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Elizabethtown.