Lydia Elvire Barreca Bermudez, the youngest of eight children, was brought into this world by Maria (Ribaudo) and Joseph Barreca in Sousse, Tunisia (North Africa) on July 5, 1943.
Lydia grew up on a small farm in Sousse run by her father. They grew almond and pear trees and raised small animals such as pigs and goats. In 1962, her family voyaged to New Orleans, Louisiana, to start anew. In 1963, she met the love of her life, Henry E. Bermudez, Jr. They were married on June 16, 1967.
Lydia bore three children: twins Donald and Charles, and a daughter, Marie-Paule. After her husband’s death in 1977, she worked in the retail industry, in the administrative office at Zee’s Shoes, as head of the layaway department at Imperial Shoe Store and as an international translator and artistic gift wrapping specialist at Rubenstein Bros.
Always active in her church, Lydia attended St. Gabriel the Archangel, where she was the first woman usher, St. James Major and, after Hurricane Katrina, Our Lady of Prompt Succor. Soon after her mother fell ill, Lydia stopped working to care for her, which she did for 14 years until she herself had a tragic stroke that left her with only the use of her right side. After intense therapy, she rallied to regain her strength, only to have a reoccurrence 20 years later, which left her wheelchair bound. Her faithful and dedicated son, Charles, was her primary caregiver during this difficult chapter in her life, sharing some of the responsibilities with his two siblings.
Lydia led a long and fascinating life. She had the honor of meeting General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Red Foxx, Pope John Paul II and Michael Jordan. She enjoyed going to Café Du Monde with her grandchildren, visiting her co-workers at Rubenstein Bros. and talking to her siblings on the phone. She had a vivacious spirit and was a force to be reckoned with. She is loved and will be dearly missed.
Lydia is preceded in death by her parents Maria (Ribaudo) and Joseph Barreca, her husband Henry E. Bermudez, Jr., her sisters Theresa Perez, Rosette Covrtat, Caroline Chanbonnere and her brother Antoine Barreca.
She is survived by her siblings, Joseph Barreca, Sr. (Mary Alyce), Irene Lucia and Dorothy Boudreaux; her sister-in-law Nicole Barreca; her children, Donald Edward Bermudez (Nena), Charles Henry Bermudez and Marie-Paule Clark (Jeff); five grandchildren, Jason Michael Boudreaux, Zachary Alvan Boudreaux, Beau Gabriel Lanoix Bermudez, Bryce Martin Lanoix Bermudez and Janae Veronica Lanoix Bermudez; and a host of nieces, nephews, friends and neighbors.
Family and friends are invited to attend the Memorial Mass at 11:00 am on Saturday, March 9, 2019 in the J. Garic Schoen Chapel of JACOB SCHOEN & SON, 3827 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA. 70119. Visitation will begin at 9:00 am and continue until Mass time. Condolences may be expressed at www.schoenfh.com