Ann Marie Sylvester, (July 6, 1965-April 6, 2020). On Monday, April 6, 2020, Ann Marie Sylvester, 54, of Cranston, RI tragically passed away from injuries received in a motorcycle accident.
Ann Marie was born in Providence, RI to Dillia L. Sylvester and the late Daniel D. Sylvester. She was a 1983 graduate of West Warwick High School, received her BS in Accounting from Rhode Island College in 1987, and in 1992 graduated from The Humanities Center School of Massage in Pinellas Park, Florida. Since that time, she operated a private practice, True Touch Massage Therapy, in Warwick, RI. She achieved her master’s degree in Experiential Health and Healing from the Graduate Institute in Connecticut, and was also certified in Ayurvedic/Sacred Stone Massage, Bodywork for the Child Bearing Year (Pregnancy Massage) and Kinesio Taping. She was also trained in reflexology and herbology, and was a Reiki Master/Teacher. Ann Marie loved her work and cherished her clients.
Ann Marie loved life, everything from music and theatre to sports and travel. She and her siblings enjoyed performing for family and friends at gatherings and celebrations, singing with her sisters -- while doing chores, during car rides, in Sr. Mary Roberts class and in the St. James Church Choir. Her first public theater performance was a varsity review at WWHS in her senior year. From 1985-1987 she performed in the Make-A-Wish Foundation Cabaret in the chorus where she had many solos. From 1989-1997 she was involved with Academy Players, Pawtucket Players and Newport Players where she enjoyed singing and dancing in various roles.
Ann Marie and Mark enjoyed traveling together, as well as with friends and family. They made many memories together at their home, hiking, biking, scuba diving, and being on the water, in the Caribbean, Long Lake, Maine and at numerous annual events such as the Rock Pine Music Festival. She never missed a Patriots or Bruins game, and always made each event a celebration.
Since 1995 Ann Marie was known professionally as Mahdia, where she was a beloved and integral part of New England’s belly dance community. She studied Middle Eastern dance, music and culture with nationally recognized instructors including an advanced study program in Egypt. She was passionate about performing and being an instructor. Beginning in 2016 she produced Belly Dance Night which brought the world of belly dance to the public-at-large in the greater Providence region. Ann Marie’s passion for her art and her relationships within the dance community made a deep impact on Middle Eastern dance in New England.
Ann Marie was a fiercely loyal, loving, generous and compassionate individual; not only to her immediate family but to her large extended family and friends. She celebrated life each and every day. She always remembered birthdays and special occasions and selflessly gave from her heart all that she had. Ann Marie dedicated the better part of her adult life to helping others feel better - both physically and spiritually. Whether it was as a trained massage therapist, a practitioner of alternative treatment or sharing her generous heart, she was always there to help others. Truly, hers was a life well spent helping others to heal. Ann Marie left indelible footprints in the hearts of many. She will always be profoundly loved and missed deeply.
Ann Marie is survived by her mother, Dillia L. Sylvester, her beloved life partner, Mark McWade, her sisters Helen Irene Sylvester and partner Bill, Mary Elizabeth Calci (Liz) and husband Kevin, and brother Daniel John Sylvester. She was the proud Aunt to Liz, Matthew, and Dr. Steven Lafond, Zachary and Courtney Calci, and Victoria (Tori) Sylvester; Great Aunt to Adelyne, Isabella and Abigail, as well as many loving relatives from the McWade family, who will all deeply miss her presence.
In lieu of flowers, donations to the West Warwick Assistance Agency, 1293 Main Street, West Warwick, RI 02893 will be appreciated. A Memorial Mass and Celebration of Life will be held for Ann Marie at a later date and will be posted to www.PrataGallogly.com
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West Warwick Assistance Agency
1293 Main Street, West Warwick RI 02893