Felipe DiMare Estrela, 35, passed away peacefully on October 20, 2019 at his home in Winchester, MA following a courageous five-year battle with cancer. Born on July 25, 1984, Felipe was the youngest child of José D. Estrela and Marianne DiMare Estrela. He and his older sister, Guida, were raised in Somerville, MA and enjoyed a childhood filled with Friday night picnics in the living room; Sunday dinners with their many aunts, uncles and cousins at their Grampy’s house; and adventures abroad to visit family and friends in the Azores and Brazil.
Growing up, Felipe attended the Atrium School, the Jackson School, and the Rivers School, where he discovered his talent for acting. He later attended Connecticut College, graduating with a major in Urban Sociology and a minor in East Asian Studies. At Conn, Felipe was an active member of the campus community: he quickly became known for his infectiously enthusiastic presence in the Office of Volunteer and Community Service, where he did his work study; he sang a cappella as a member of Vox Cameli; acted in numerous plays; and participated in the multicultural show “Eclipse,” where he met his wife, Julia.
In 2005, Felipe spent a semester at Beijing University, where he researched the Uyghur ethnic minority, studied Mandarin, and was bitten by the travel bug. Following his graduation in 2007, Felipe and Julia spent three years living in Taiwan and Korea, where Felipe taught ESL. During their time abroad, they were able to expand their travels to include Hong Kong, mainland China, Thailand, and Mexico.
Felipe and Julia were married on his 25th birthday, July 25, 2009. In 2010, they returned to the Boston area, where Felipe got a job as a recruiter at Workbridge Associates. He quickly proved himself to be a talented and driven employee, often working through chemo, radiation, and surgical recoveries. When he wasn't at the office, Felipe loved spending time with Julia; their four beloved children, Felipe, Chloe, José, and Elena; their close-knit extended family; and their many close-enough-to-be-family friends.
Felipe was a lover of music, good food, Arnold Palmer iced tea, and all things Patriots. He was a devoted son and son-in-law, brother and brother-in-law. He was a husband who could inspire butterflies even fourteen years into love. He was a father who could push through stage 4 cancer and a full work day to come home and read bedtime stories in the most animated voices and deliver tickles to his most adoring children.
Felipe was a person to whom deep, enduring friendships came easily. He genuinely saw the beauty in life, and he possessed an innate ability to share that joy with those around him. In his short time on earth, he created a legacy of kindness, generosity, and light that will carry all those who grieve him now through the years to come.
Felipe was preceded in death by his grandparents, Joseph and Mary DiMare, and Teresa and José T. Estrela; and by his father-in-law, John Wisbach. He is survived by his wife, Julia Estrela, and their children, Felipe, Chloe, José, and Elena Estrela; his parents, Marianne and José D. Estrela; his sister and brother-in-law, Guida and Scott Mattison, and their children, Jack and Scarlett Mattison; his sister-in-law, Allie Wisbach, and her partner, Ellie Sanchez; his brother-in-law and sister-in-law, John and Abigail Wisbach; his mother-in-law, Mary Ross Wisbach; and several aunts, uncles, and cousins.
Visiting hours will be held at Lane Funeral Home in Winchester on Thursday, October 24th from 4pm to 7pm. A burial service will be held at Wildwood Cemetery in Winchester on Friday, October 25th at 11am. There will be coffee and desserts to follow at Woburn Country Club.
In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute directed to the Sarcoma and Bone Cancer Area, or to the Estrela Family GoFundMe which will benefit Chloe, Felipe, José, and Elena.