Losing your mother is one of the hardest things you can experience in life, and the pain doesn’t go away easily. On occasions like birthdays and Mother’s Day, the grief often returns, especially if it’s soon after their passing.
So it was an emotional weekend for the Wahlberg family: Alma, the family matriarch and mother of Mark and Donnie, died last month following a battle with dementia, and this weekend marked not just Mother’s Day but what would’ve been her 79th birthday.
In her memory, her sons paid tribute to their late mother on social media.
She was always an angel.
Now she has her wings.
Rest peacefully Alma.
As Always, your Baby Donnie#RIPAlma ??❤️?? https://t.co/qrR7foxSM8 pic.twitter.com/IICsPPwHlp
— Donnie Wahlberg (@DonnieWahlberg) April 18, 2021
Alma was the mother of nine children, two of whom went on to become major stars: Donnie, a founding member of the music group New Kids on the Block and current star of Blue Bloods, and Mark, a major Hollywood star of films like The Departed and the Transformers franchise.
“They’re all so unique in their own way,” she said of her kids, according to USA Today. “I’m really proud of them. Not just the success, but how they’ve turned out. They’re really good people. I wouldn’t care if they were ditch diggers, as long as they’re good people.”
But Alma was also famous in her own right, known to the public as one of the stars of Wahlburgers, a reality show about the family’s burger chain.
This week, her children paid multiple tributes to her, for her birthday and for Mother’s Day. Mark shared a photo of them on her birthday, with the simple caption “Happy birthday mommy.”
On Mother’s Day, he shared two posts, one a photo of him with Alma and his wife, and then a video slideshow of Alma set to “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.”
“Miss you mom,” Mark wrote.
On Alma’s birthday, Donnie shared one of his favorite final memories of his late mother.
On a visit home, he played Alma’s favorite song, “Native New Yorker,” and despite her poor health she was overjoyed.
“She amazingly (but not surprisingly) lit up when she heard it, just like the shining star that she always was,” Donnie wrote on Instagram.
Shortly after her death last month, Donnie wrote a lengthy tribute to her on social media, calling her the “epitome of the word grace.”
“She was, without a doubt, the most loving human being I’ve ever known,” Donnie wrote. “I never heard her say, or do, anything disrespectful to anyone. She was, as anybody who ever came across her knows, true blue.”
“Like so many moms who struggled, overcame odds, made something from nothing and pulled off the impossible for their children, she never complained. She did what needed to be done, most often, with a smile. She made the best of times in the worst of times.”
Rest in peace, Alma ❤️ It’s clear you made a huge impact on your children and were very much loved. You will be remembered forever.
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