Maria Mercedes Ortiz-Correa, 79 years young, was called home on February 14, 2021 in Orange Park, Florida.
From birth to the end, her smile and laughter were always infectious. She lit up the room the moment she entered and from the first hug to the minutes after you met you became family in her eyes. To Maria you were never a stranger just a new member of the family.
Maria was born September 24, 1941 in Coamo, Puerto Rico to Hipolito and Delores Ortiz. After beginning her life in Puerto Rico, Maria then moved to New York where she finished her education became a flight attendant for Eastern Airlines.
After some time, she returned to Puerto Rico where she started a family with her husband, Arthur Gray. Soon after starting their family, they moved to Maine where Maria started her own business designing fashions for a modeling agency. From there she ended up at Rhode Island School of Design where she earned her Associates Degree in fashion design.
Since Maria was part of a military family, she transferred with her husband and children around the East Coast before settling in California where she started the next phase of her life. While in California she worked as a PC Board Manufacturer at Hewlett Packard where she thrived and shared her passion for life and her family with everyone she met.
Throughout her life Maria loved going to church, playing Bingo, volunteering at the library, and above all spending time with her family. Maria was a part of the Red Hat Society in both Florida and Nevada where everyone will always remember her as a loving and caring person. Maria loved to travel and was always up for an adventure. No matter what, she always had a smile on her face, a joke to tell, and open arms for whoever needed it.
Maria was preceded in death by her parents, Hipolito and Delores Ortiz.
Maria is survived by her four children, daughter, Kathy (Larry), son, Henry (Qui-Que), daughter, Lynda (Timothy), daughter, Cindy and daughter/granddaughter Dawn; thirteen grandchildren, Dawn, David, Tiffany (Jason), Christopher (Faith), Amanda, Sasha, Trent, Nicholas, James, Anthony, Tamara, Tiana, and Davonte; sixteen great-grandchildren, Andre DeVon, Jordan, Isaiah, Leilani, Brielle, Keahla, Murdock, Caylee, Brixton, Tyson, Leo, Apollo, Devyn, Daya, Dayce and Amaya; one great-great grandson, Tristan.
There will be a memorial service on March 19, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. at Aaron and Burney Bivens Funeral Home, 529 Kingsley Avenue, Orange Park, Florida 32073, (904) 264-1233.
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