Dominga P. Reyes, a former school teacher and farmer, died Friday of heart failure at Baltimore Washington Medical Center. She was 100.
Dominga Pacson, the daughter of rice farmers, was born and raised in Nueva Ecija, the Philippines, where she graduated from high school.
"She was known for her strong-willed personality and cunning business sense," said a granddaughter, Niezle Custodio of Hanover, who is a project manager for The Baltimore Sun Media Group.
Her strength was proven during World War II when the Japanese invaded her homeland.
"Dominga and her family often found themselves constantly moving and hiding in dugouts without food or sleep for days," her granddaughter said.
She later taught school and after she married Faustino Y. Reyes in 1944, the couple managed the family livestock and rice farm.
Her husband died in 1993, and two years later, she came to live with her daughter in Hanover.
Mrs. Reyes became a U.S. citizen when she was 90, and "passed the oral citizenship exam with English as a second language," her granddaughter said.
She enjoyed gardening and caring for family pets, and liked hand-embroidering garments, Ms. Custodio said.
Mrs. Reyes was a communicant of St. Joseph Roman Catholic Church, 1283 Odenton Road, Odenton, where a Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 9 a.m. Friday.
Also surviving are her daughter, Nemencita R. Custodio of Hanover; four other grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.