November 20, 1942 - October 24, 2019
Linda Margaret (Sands) Guiel, passed away at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, in the early evening hours of October 24, 2019. She was 76 years old.
Linda was born in Holyoke, MA on November 20, 1942. Her mother was the late Margaret (Lemire) Sands, of Holyoke, MA. Her father was the late William Sands, also of Holyoke, MA. William Sands was a Staff Sergeant and WWII hero, who died in action when his tank squadron was ambushed in Northern Africa. Although Linda never had the opportunity to meet her own father, she was comforted by stories about him, and she beamed with pride when relaying those stories to her own children later in her life.
Linda grew up in a healthy and loving environment, surrounded by her mother and many supportive and helpful aunts, uncles, and friends. She had an unwaveringly optimistic spirit as a child, one that she would possess her entire life. Linda lived a life full of love, hope, and optimism, eternally grateful for all of life’s simple pleasures. She genuinely proclaimed that she viewed everything in this world with “Rose-Colored Glasses.”
Linda attended schools in Holyoke, eventually graduating from Holyoke Catholic High School in 1961. Linda always excelled in school. Graduating as a straight “A” student, Linda could have attended college, but her heart was set on being a wife and mother. She wanted a family above all else. As a 6th grader, Linda met the one and only true love of her life, Gerald Edward Guiel, also of Holyoke, who was in 8th grade at the time. They remained inseparable until her death. They officially married in 1965, and they spent the next fifty-four years of their lives faithfully loving and supporting each other, raising four sons, and eventually welcoming four grandchildren to the family as well.
As her sons grew, Linda eventually returned to the workforce in the Chicopee School System and at the Diamond Gold Connection in Chicopee. Because Linda loved being around people, she was perfectly suited for those two jobs, and she enjoyed her time at each job immensely.
Linda’s greatest pleasure in life was simply being around her family and friends. Whether it was hosting dinners and holidays at her home, going out to socialize with her husband at the old Bridge Café, heading out for breakfast at Lucky Strike or Jennifer’s Kitchen, or making late night and delicious homemade pizzas for her sons and their friends, Linda not only savored those times with her family throughout her life, she lived for them.
As a doting and loving mother, Linda selflessly devoted her life to her children. As a wife, Linda plunged headlong – without fear, hesitation, or regret – into a sixty two year relationship and fifty four year marriage to her best friend and husband, Jerry Guiel.
Many years ago, Linda lost her own mother and her best friend to illness, and she was devastated when her son, James Edward Guiel of Chicopee, suddenly and tragically died in January of 2019. Linda also could easily have lost her faith in God and could have given up her own fight. Instead, to the very end, she prayed constantly to Jesus Christ, with an endless reservoir of strength and faith.
We miss her so deeply. We know we always will. We must take comfort in her belief in Heaven and in the unknown. We believe she is in Heaven now, eternally able to see her precious son James again, to enjoy the company of her own mother again, and to start a relationship with the father she never had the chance to know here on Earth.
Linda leaves her beloved husband, Gerald E. Guiel of Chicopee, her son, Jeffrey M. Guiel and his wife, Davi-Lee Guiel of South Hadley, her son, Jon J. Guiel and his wife, Brenda Guiel of Chicopee. She also leaves her son, Michael E. Guiel of Chicopee.
Linda leaves four grandchildren, Alyssa and Katelyn Guiel of Chicopee and Luke and Levi Guiel of South Hadley, as well as cousins, nephews, nieces, and countless friends.