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Jose da Silva Gonsalves
Photo JoseGonsalves
Jose da Silva Gonsalves
Sept. 7, 1934 - Oct. 24, 2009
Jose da Silva Gonsalves, 75 of Gustine passed away in his home on Oct. 24 after a ten month struggle with cancer. Viewing will be at 4:30 p.m. Thursday at Our Lady of Miracles Church in Gustine, followed by a Rosary at 7 p.m. Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at Our Lady of Miracles Church in Gustine, followed by a graveside service at Turlock Memorial Park, where he will be laid to rest. A reception celebrating his life will be held at the GPS Hall in Gustine immediately following the graveside service.
Jose, or Joe as many knew him, was born on Sept. 7, 1934 in Porto Judeu, Terceira, Acores to Mateus Goncalves Leonardo and Maria Angelina da Silva. He was the third born of seven children, six boys and one girl. He married Maria Joao Borges Toste, also from Porto Judeu, in February of 1958. They were married for 25 years before he lost her in June of 1983.  
Joe and Maria immigrated to America in May of 1969 with their four children. He worked in the dairy industry most of his life, owning a dairy in Turlock for a few years.
On Nov. 4, 1989, Joe married Clara Santos Simoes. He was very involved in his church community. Joe served as director for both the Gustine Pentecost Society and the Our Lady of Miracles Society Portuguese celebrations in Gustine, and for the Turlock Pentecost Association in Turlock in the 1980s.  He donated much of his time helping out whenever needed. He was also a of member of the fraternal societies of SES and Luso America. In his retirement years, he spent much of his free time gardening.
He grew most of the vegetables and fruits for his household, and shared much of it with his children, family, friends and neighbors, and anyone who happened to stop by.  Depending on the season, one could leave his house with a bag full of potatoes or tomatoes, grapes or kale, figs or oranges. Joe was a very social man and really enjoyed getting out and about, attending most of the festas throughout the Valley and attending card parties and bull fights. He was a gentle and kind person with a wonderful sense of humor.  Joe was loved and will be greatly missed by all who knew him.
Joe is survived by his wife, Clara Santos Gonsalves of Gustine, son Roger and Julie Gonsalves of Turlock, daughter Connie and Dimas Lopes of Los Banos, daughter Mary and Frank Pires of Elk Grove, daughter Marie and Troy Hirschkorn of Denair; eight grandchildren and one great-granddaughter.  He is also survived by his brothers Francisco da Silva of Hanford, Manuel and Georgina Leonardo of Tracy, Joao and Maria de Lurdes Leonardo of Tracy, Antonio and Niveria Leonardo of Manteca; sister Maria Angelina and Verissimo Toste of Ribeirinha, Terceira, Acores; sister in law Maria de Lurdes Leonardo of Tulare, and many nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his first wife Maria Joao Toste Gonsalves, brother Mateus Leonardo and sister in law Maria de Fatima da Silva.
Services under the direction of Whitehurst, Norton & Dias Funeral Service in Turlock.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight.”