Floral 07

Elizabeth B. Zarraga

April 2, 2022



“Not all angels reside in Heaven. Some walk the earth. Just like you.” This epitomizes how we felt about Elizabeth “Beth” Belisario Zarraga, who passed away peacefully in her home while surrounded by her adoring family on April 2, 2022. Beth’s infectious smile and kind heartedness made a lasting impact on everyone that was lucky enough to know her, and she had a uniquely “Mama Beth” way of meeting new people and not only making them feel welcome, but feel like family.

Beth was born on November 15, 1947, in Manila, Philippines, to parents Simplicio and Zenaida Belisario. She grew up in a tight-knit family as the eldest sibling to her brother Simplicio Jr. “Billy”, her only sister Cynthia “Cynn”, and brothers Antonio “Nonette” and Daniel “Dan”. With a father that was a Colonel in the Philippine Army and a mother that was a school teacher, it was a family built around structure and discipline, but it was also a family built around laughter, faith, and love.

Beth graduated from St. Theresa’s College in Manila before traveling to the United States to pursue her nursing degree at American University in Washington, D.C. She found her calling working in the neonatal intensive care unit, and she had an absolutely magical way with children. We will never forget the smile of satisfaction on her face when she would come home from a 12 hour night shift to tell stories about a baby that pulled through and was able to leave the hospital, healthy and happy in the arms of their grateful parents. She would go on to dedicate over 40 years of her life to caring for newborns and counseling their concerned and anxious parents. Her overflowing kindness and genuine compassion shined through in her work, and she made a tremendous impact on countless families over her decades of nursing.

Matthew 5:16 reads “Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” Beth did not just love this verse, she lived it. As a devout Catholic, her life was one of faith and service. Over the course of her lifetime, she served as a religious education teacher, Eucharistic minister, and volunteered at The Center in Asbury Park providing support services for people living with HIV. She was very passionate about her involvement with the BLD, a Catholic community dedicated to poverty alleviation through scholarships, housing for the poor, and building communities of faith. Her BLD friends became her second family, and she looked forward to their annual medical missions back to the Philippines where she administered medical care and supplies to underserved, rural communities. She was an inspiration to us all.

Beth loved dipping her feet in the ocean, Maryland blue crabs with vinegar and extra Old Bay, playing endless hours of mahjong, and bragging about her children and grandchildren to anyone that would listen. She loved Broadway shows (especially Phantom of the Opera), going to Mass with her family, and sneaking a few things out of the all you can eat buffet for her kids or grandkids to snack on later. But most of all, she loved her four children, her nine precious grandchildren, and her best friend, soul-mate, and husband Mike, who she never stopped holding hands with for over 48 years of marriage.

She is survived by her husband Miguel “Mike”; her daughter Kristine and husband Chad; her son Michael and wife Sandra; her son Marc and wife Kimberly; her son Matthew and husband Wayne; her nine grandchildren Gianni, Tayvian, Jordan, Aidan, Payton, Jackson, Lincoln, Kennedy, and Cameron; her brothers Simplicio Jr. “Billy” and Daniel; and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.

A Funeral Mass will be held in her honor at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church (800 Ocean Avenue, Long Branch, NJ 07740) at 10:30am on Friday, April 8, 2022. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to BLD Trenton Foundation: Gawad Kalinga Mission http://www.bldtrentongk.org/ (.P.O. Box 1367, Toms River, NJ 08754) or St. Vincent De Paul Society at St. Michael’s Church., 800 Ocean Avenue, Long Branch, NJ 07740. The family invites you to leave a letter of condolence by selecting the Tribute/Guestbook link above.

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Mass of Christian Burial
April 8, 2022

10:30 AM
St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church
800 Ocean Avenue
Long Branch, NJ 07740


Holmdel Cemetery and Mausoleum
900 Holmdel Road


St. Vincent De Paul Society at St Michael's Church
800 Ocean Ave, Long Branch NJ 07740

BLD Trenton Foundation: Gawad Kalinga Mission
P.O. Box 1367, Toms River NJ 08754
Web: http://www.bldtrentongk.org/

Please be sure to type in what the donation is for---Gawad Kalinga. If donating by check please write in memo Gawad Kalinga Mission-Elizabeth Zarraga

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