Bench dedicated to honor longtime Peabody Housing Authority resident | News
PEABODY — Two benches now sit on the front lawn of the Peabody Housing Authority’s Center Street building in memory of longtime resident Elvino Machado, who family members remember as a quiet man and wonderful uncle.
Machado was born in Graciosa, Azores, Portugal on Jan. 20, 1944. He served in the Portuguese Army for four years before immigrating to the United States in 1975, where he worked in the leather industry and in several restaurants.
He lived with his mother until her death and moved in with his sister at the 75 Central St. Peabody Housing Authority apartments over 20 years ago. Machado remained there until his death in August of last year.
“He’d probably be a little embarrassed about this because he really wasn’t big into parties or anything like that,” his niece Maria Pesola said. “But knowing that his name would live on for a long time and those benches are in the place where he lived for a very long time, I think he would appreciate it.”
Pesola, her mother and other family members gathered with representatives of the Peabody Housing Authority and some of his former neighbors in the building at the bench’s dedication Tuesday morning.
The family donated to the Peabody Housing Authority to celebrate Machado’s life.
“After all his expenses were paid, there was still some of his savings left over,” Pesola said. “We wanted to make a donation in his name, so that his name would live on a little longer since he didn’t have children and a spouse.”
Machado did have four siblings and seven nieces and nephews, as well as several great- and great-great nieces and nephews.
“I’m hoping that the residents will appreciate the benches,” his niece Maria Lobao said. “We at least get to drive by on a regular basis and think of him.”
Peabody Housing Authority Executive Director Anne Marie Burns didn’t work with Machado directly as a tenant, but knew him from around the building.
“He was very quiet and kept to himself most of the time, but he loved to sit outside. That’s partly why we thought of the bench,” Burns said. “He always had a head nod or smile. Everyone seemed to love him and know him.”
That includes his former neighbor in the building, Geraldine Sauve.
“He was a very nice man,” she said.