Maria Emma Prieto Pirachican
Maria Emma Prieto was born in Tenjo, Cundinamarca in Colombia, South America on July 2, 1922. She was the only child to Fidel Prieto and Alaida Orozco. Her parents were artisans who raised her to have a strong work ethic, be patient and have a positive outlook on life. At the age of 37, Maria Emma Prieto married Guillermo Pirachican and together they had three children Henry, Luis, and Lucia Pirachican. They lived a humble life in the small town of Madrid. Maria Emma was quiet, dedicated to her faith and her church friends. When her children were young, her husband Guillermo left the marriage and left Maria Emma to raise her three children ages 2, 3, and 6 years old. Maria Emma quickly realized she had to be brave, resilient, and creative in order to raise her children on her own. She became the sole provider as she dedicated herself to making and selling homemade meals at the local plaza and cleaning the local church in her neighborhood. She became known for making the best “Peto and Arepas de Dulce” in town. It was this claim to fame that helped Maria Emma provide a humble life for her children. Her faith was tested in 1991 when her son Henry became paralyzed as a result of a construction accident. This accident eventually caused him to pass away when he was 30 year old. While grieving, Maria Emma tried to contact her former husband Guillermo to notify him Henry had passed away and in this effort she learned he too had passed away just 6 months prior. Despite this loss, Maria Emma placed her faith in the Lord. As the years passed Maria Emma’s children Lucia and Luis had many children and their families quickly grew. Maria Emma moved to California in the United States where she lived with her daughter Lucia and her family. She proved to be a survivor as she faced many challenges including the loss of her husband and son, living through the war in Colombia, being diagnosed with Colon Cancer, and most recently surviving the Covid Pandemic. Maria Emma truly was an incredible woman who loved her family and demonstrated true inner strength and faith despite the challenges she faced. Maria Emma Prieto passed away on March 20, 2022 just 4 months shy of her 100th birthday. She passed peacefully surrounded by her daughter Lucia and her husband Jaime who took care of her in her later years. She was loved by her grandchildren and great grandchildren for being patient, humble, quietly outgoing and loving. We are ever so grateful for the many years of life she spent with us. We know we have gained an angel who will continue to provide us with love, patience, and protection from heaven.
Today we celebrate her life. We are at peace with how she left us and are so blessed to have spent time with her before she passed away.