Leokadia “Lucy” Walla, age 91, a long-time resident of Leander, Texas passed away quietly at her family home on Saturday, April 27, 2019, tenacious to the end. Her faith strong, her sense of humor wicked, her fierce love and devotion to family and friends, Lucy will be sorely missed but jubilantly remembered.
Born on February 10, 1928 in Poland to Czeslaw and Maria (Lochka) Celinski, the fourth of ten children, growing up on the family farm with all its provisions, hard-work, as well as days of childish mischief; the innocent days of childhood ended when Lucy was 12. The family farm was confiscated and Lucy and her family were taken from their home by cattle car to Siberia as part of Stalin’s invasion of Poland - exiled to labor camps, nearly starved and endured hardships unthinkable for two years. The family was separated by age and gender, some enduring concentration camps; refugees scattered across the globe – some reunited after up to four decades while others never reunited with loved ones at all.
Lucy saw more of this world than many, having relocated through Kazakhstan crossing the Caspian Sea to Iran (Isfahan) and Iraq with a Polish Red Cross Orphans group, eventually meeting her future husband, Emanuel “Eddy” Walla, a Polish soldier, in Lebanon. Eddy proposed to Lucy after only one day and their marriage lasted 52 years strong. The couple further relocated to Scotland where sons Jozef and Czeslaw were born only to move again to England where they boarded passage on the Queen Mary to arrive at Ellis Island, New York in 1954. The family lived on Long Island as part of Lucy’s dream to have a house, a white picket fence, and another child came true with the birth of their third child, son Richard.
An impeccable seamstress, having sewn parachutes, fire-proof suits and other military items for our soldiers during the Vietnam war, while working in a small factory in Mineloa, New York, Lucy also fashioned gorgeous couture engagement and wedding gowns along with stunning knitted and crocheted afghans, shawls, intricately patterned doilies and baby garments. Her green-thumb made her gardens flourish with prize-winning tomatoes and cucumbers that made the best pickles ever. Her tart-cherries and Polish Spirytus would wipe out many a cold as it put a smile on many a face.
After 30+ years, Lucy and Eddy followed their youngest son and future wife to Texas, establishing themselves in the communities of St. Thomas More and St. Margaret Mary’s Catholic churches. As early parishioners of the original, rock mission church of St. Margaret Mary’s church, Lucy and Eddy were stewards under Reverend William Benish, first pastor of St. Margaret Mary’s, later Fr. Le-Minh and Monsignor Elmer of St. Thomas More Catholic church. Lucy was Sacristan at St. Margaret Mary’s, she was in Founding Group 1 for Eucharistic Apostles of Divine Mercy and Intercession Prayer since 2003 and was the first Suffering Soul Member – a person who consciously and voluntarily offers up prayers and physical sufferings to God for accomplishing EADM’s mission. Lucy was also the Suffering Soul Member for several different cenacles that were formed in succeeding years as well as a Friend of Mercy of God Catholic Prayer Center. Lucy had the voice of an angel, offering her operatic talents in the church choir and sang an offering song in Polish, beautifully, for her beloved Pope John Paul II in his last days. Lucy was well-loved by many devoted friends who were and are like family.
Lucy was preceded in death by her parents, loving husband, Emanuel “Eddy” Walla, and siblings Edward, Genowefa, Helena, Stanislawa and Janina Celinski. She is survived by sons, Jozef (Jean) Walla, Chester Walla, Richard (Alison) Walla, siblings Witold (Virginia) Celinski , Karolina Cerasi, Barbara (Janek) Grzesiak, and Edward (Debbie) Celinski, grandchildren Jennifer Walla, Cody Walla, Hayley Walla, Christopher (Lacey) Walla, Amanda Walla, beloved great-grandchildren Rico Hernandez, Robbie Hernandez and Alayna Hernandez, as well as many loving nieces and nephews and other extended family members.
Our thanks to the attentive nurses and aides who cared for Lucy and gave us respite during her six months of Home Hospice through AccentCare, Texas Home Health. A Memorial Service will follow at a later date and will be announced in St. Margaret Mary’s Catholic Church bulletin, Leander, Texas.
Beautiful Soul (Author Unknown)
“Wherever a beautiful soul has been there is a trail of beautiful memories.” ~
Mother’s Hug (Author Unknown) “A mother’s hug lasts long after she lets go.”
Sacredness in Tears
By Washington Irving
“There is a sacredness in tears.
They are not the mark of weakness,
but of power.
They speak more eloquently
than ten thousand tongues.
They are messengers
of overwhelming grief
and unspeakable love.”
“Love endures everything, love is stronger than death, love fears nothing.” ― Saint Faustina Kowalska
“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.”― Irish proverb