Josephine Laura Moura (Jo) passed away peacefully of natural causes on January 21, 2019 at the youthful age of 95.
In 2007, at the age of 84, and in order to be closer to family, Jo and Art moved from Venice, FL (where they had retired to from Brazil) to Fearrington Village, NC, and created yet another beautiful, comfortable family home.
In the ten years since the passing of Arthur, her beloved husband of 65 years, Jo was lovingly cared for by her devoted daughters, Janice and Valerie, son Bob, dear family friend, Patty Conzett, her loyal canine companion, Honey, and a wonderful and close circle of neighbors and friends. She also enjoyed and was comforted by the many visits from dear family and friends during these years.
Born in Taunton, Massachusetts as children of Portuguese immigrants, they were both members of a drum and bugle corps/drill team known as The Sons and Daughters of Portugal. Dad played the drums and Mom marched with the drill team. They met at one of the events and soon became high school sweethearts. Art claimed that it was love at first sight for him and that Jo was his one and only sweetheart and the first major impact on his life story.
They married in Louisville, KY in 1943 as Art was starting his career in the Army and spent the next 32 years of active duty serving in such varied places as Monterey, CA, Arlington and Alexandria, VA, The Panama Canal Zone Rio de Janeiro and Brasilia, Brazil. The two were a perfect match; Art with his mastery of diplomacy and vast knowledge of and affinity for all things to do with Latin America - especially Brazil; and Jo with her ebullient, open-hearted, friendly nature, infectious laugh, charm and positive, upbeat personality. She had an exuberant zest for life that was contagious, and those who were fortunate enough to meet and interact with her seemed to leave those encounters feeling uplifted.
Jo had a natural sense of fashion as well as a knack for creating beautiful, comfortable and inviting spaces. Because of their career, they did a lot of entertaining in their overseas assignments. It wasn’t unusual for them to host several hundred people for diplomatic soirees or to have close friends over for card sessions that lasted into the early morning.
Over the years, Jo became an expert player of Bridge, Canasta and Hand and Foot. She derived much pleasure and comfort from her daily card games and greeted most visitors with the question, “Do you want to play cards?”
A loving, loyal and dedicated wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, grandmother/great grandmother and friend, Jo is survived by her sons, Kenneth S. Moura (Judy) and Robert A. Moura (Sandi); daughters, Valerie E. Moura and Janice D. Moura Cruz (Fernando); seven grandchildren (Kenneth Jr and Brian Moura, Ashley Koncul, Andrea O’Neal, Alexander Moura, Tom and Alice Cruz); seven great grandchildren (Kenneth III and Alison Moura, Bear and Alexandra Koncul, Wells and Henry O’Neal and Turner Moura). She is also survived by many beloved nieces, nephews and friends.
A Mass of Christian Burial was held at St. Thomas More Church in Chapel Hill on Friday, February 1st at 2:00 pm. Jo was buried with her beloved Arthur in Arlington National Cemetery on Friday, March 22, 2019..
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation in Jo’s name, or maybe hug your loved ones and tell them how much you love and appreciate them, or get in touch with your child-like innocence and let out some joyous laughter ‘a la’ Josephine. Rest in peace Jo. We love you dearly.
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