Teresa Alexine Bendokas
Teresa Alexine “Tree” Bendokas, 42, passed away Jan. 5, 2022. She was born July 19, 1979 on Block Island, R.I., the beloved daughter of William and Lois (Mitchell) Bendokas of Block Island. Teresa graduated from the Block Island School and went on to attend New England College in N.H., Leslie College in Boston, and CCRI in R.I. She was always continuing her education to stay ahead in her field.
In 2007, Teresa landed her dream job as an intake coordinator at Crossroads for Women in Scarborough. She was named outpatient practice manager in 2011. She then joined the IT department as systems administrator, and was director of systems and technology at Crossroads for nine years. Teresa also led various training sessions for Crossroads.
She was a devoted mother to her daughter Marley Grace,12, and her son Emmett Lucas, 7. Bendokas, known lovingly as “Tree,” was remembered as a strong, funny, and compassionate person, who devoted her life to her children.
Her mother, Lois Bendokas of Block Island, said she was the kind of mom who left notes in her kids lunchboxes. She said when her son woke up at 3 a.m. and wanted to play dinosaurs, she got on the floor to play with him. When her daughter went to summer camp on a farm, she put a note in her backpack that said, “Go out and have fun today and get covered in mud. I love you.”
“She was always encouraging them to be adventurists and go out and enjoy the world,” her mother said. “That’s exactly what they are. They are wonderful kids.”
Bendokas always put her kids on the school bus before work. She was involved in her daughter’s Girl Scout troop, and always made sure her son had the right stuffed animal by his side.
“Her son was an attachment of her body. They were inseparable,” her mother said. “I’ll miss her hugs and seeing her with her babies. She would come to the island every summer, sometimes for Thanksgiving or Christmas. They were one phenomenally happy family.”
Besides her parents and children she leaves Kevin Heinfeld and Curt and Cheryl Heinfeld, also several aunts, uncles and cousins. A Memorial Mass will be held Saturday, May 14, 2022 at 12:30 p.m. at St. Andrew Catholic Church, Chapel Street, Block Island. The family will receive relatives and friends at the church one half hour prior to the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorial gifts may be made to The Mary D. Fund, Box 323, Block Island, RI 02807, or to The Marley Emmett Trust Fund, Box A-2, Block Island, RI 02807.