Orlando G. Rosa was always willing to help others.
“He had a big heart and was always looking to put smiles on people’s faces and to make a difference in their lives,” his wife Marie Rosa said. “His motto was ‘always do something nice for your neighbor every day.’”
Rosa was passionate about his family.
“I remember him as always being loving and caring and always looking out for me,” she said.
Fond of his nephews and nieces, Rosa helped and counseled them when needed.
“He was like a second dad to all of them,” Marie Rosa said.
Rosa, 45, of Hammond, was a carpenter and neighborhood handyman who enjoyed making and repairing things.
The last item Rosa made for his wife was a replica of a tile mirror she had seen in a catalog. Rosa, who was patient in making his distinct artwork, also enjoyed tailoring clothes.
Orlando and Marie Rosa knew each other since both were age 10. They lived in the same south side Chicago neighborhood and building.
“We stayed friends for a long time,” Marie Rosa said. “Eventually we became adults in our 30s. He had never been married. We dated for five years and were married for 15 years.”
The couple enjoyed vacations together exploring new destinations, camping and fishing but their favorite spot was Puerto Rico, where they spent the past five Christmas and New Year holidays.
Other travels took them to the East Coast, Canada, Mackinac Island, Florida and the southern states.
Rosa also was a huge Chicago Bears fan.
Marie Rosa said she misses her husband’s smile, his kindness and especially his heart.