Agnes Golembeske, 91, Little Compton


Agnes Golembeske, 91, of Little Compton, wife of the late Charles Golembeske Sr. and the last surviving sibling of  eight brothers and four sisters, died on August 11, 2013. She was born in Little Compton on May 5, 1922, on the family's 90-acre farm, now preserved as a part of the Eight Rod Farm Management Area. She was the daughter of the late Manuel and Mary E. (Virdinlia) Arruda.

Along with her eight other classmates, Agnes was a proud 1940 graduate of Josephine F. Wilbur High School. After graduation  she became a civil service worker at the U.S. Naval Base in Newport, processing paperwork for the first Navy officer candidate class, as well as subsequent classes of men who were off to war.

Eventually she met a soldier from Connecticut named Charlie, stationed at Fort Church, and in 1943 they married at St. Catherine of Siena Church in Little Compton. Three years later a daughter, Joan, was born, and shortly thereafter they moved to Fogland Road in Tiverton. Two sons, Chuck and Paul, later arrived, and they completed the family of five.

Agnes devoted herself to rearing her children and staying involved with their activities, from PTA and hot dog roasts at Nonquit School to 4-H Club, Cub Scouts, and mothers' clubs at Sacred Hearts Academy in Fall River, and De La Salle Academy in Newport. Soon afterward she worked at Avica Corporation in Middletown to help with her children's college tuition. In the meantime she began coursework at Bryant College (now Bryant University).

Although unable to complete an advanced formal education she had already mastered the important arts of kindness, compassion, and generosity. Agnes loved her God, her family, and her country. She drove to daily Mass as long as she was physically able, hosted big holiday dinners (including her carrot cake and from-scratch macaroni and cheese), and always took pleasure in celebrating the nation's holidays, especially Memorial Day when those small American flags fluttered on veterans' gravesites throughout  town.

She is survived by a daughter, Joan (husband Tom) Carson of Little Compton; sons Charles Golembeske Jr. (wife Susan Bowler) of Cranston, and Paul J. Golembeske (companion Nancy Fontaine) of Little Compton; granddaughters Virginia and Rachel Carson; grandsons Timothy, Andrew, Joseph, Ryan and Joshua Golembeske; and four great-grandchildren. She was predeceased by brothers Manuel, Frank, James, John, Joseph, Louis, George, and Anthony Arruda; and sisters Mary Gomes, Evangeline Fagundes, Josephine Boudle, and Theresa Wells.

Agnes received the sacraments of Baptism, Reconciliation, Holy Communion, Confirmation, and Marriage at St. Catherine of Siena Church in Little Compton and the Last Rites at St. Clare Home in Newport.

She will return to St. Catherine's for her Mass of Christian Burial, to which relatives and friends are invited, which will be celebrated on Monday, Aug. 26 at 10 a.m.

Visitation hours will be Sunday, Aug. 25, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Potter Funeral Home, 81 Reed Rd., Westport.

Interment will be in Our Lady of Fatima Cemetery, Little Compton.

For directions or to sign the online guestbook, please visit


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