Though no cause was immediately given, the Wahlbergs had previously opened up about her battle with dementia. In July 2020, Mark's brother Donnie Wahlberg told fans on social media, "I know that so many of you have asked how my mom Alma is doing. During my visit, she didn't remember much, and was often confused, but somehow she was still Alma. She still lights up a room. She still made me smile. She's still stubborn. And she still loves her baby Donnie. I thank you all, for your well wishes."
On Sunday, Donnie remembered Alma with a sweet video and an essay about what she meant to him, writing, "I’m so blessed to have been brought into this world by, raised by, taught by and set on my life’s path by, such an amazing woman. My mom Alma’s joy for life, love and people — combined with a pride in her humble beginnings and refusal to forget where she came from — undoubtedly shaped me into the man that I am."
"I’ve often said, if you like anything about me, I got it from Alma. I say that, because it’s true," he went on. "She was, without a doubt, the most loving human being I’ve ever known. I never heard her say, or do, anything disrespectful to anyone. She was, as anybody who ever came across her knows, true blue."
Donnie went on to emphasize his mother's sticktoitiveness, writing, "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.That was Alma — mother, sister, daughter, grandmother, friend, ally, warrior, angel. She made no apologies for who she was, but never put herself above anyone else. She kicked our butts if we messed up, kicked anyone else’s butts if they messed with us. Taught us right, made us pay the price when we were wrong. She was the epitome of the word grace."
The actor and New Kids on the Block member waxed nostalgic, remembering, "As a young boy, she’d invite me to sing her favorite song with her (Native New Yorker by Odyssey) as she cleaned our home. There’s no doubt that the two of us singing into a mop stick, while disco dancing on our “sparkling” linoleum floor, helped inspire the dreamer in me — just like the dreamer in her. Her other favorite song, If I Could by Regina Belle, is the song that she danced with each of her children to, at their weddings. I surprised her at mine by having Ms Belle sing it to her. I did so because, despite the fact that my mom could do (and actually did) many of the things mentioned in that beautiful song, she still wondered if she’d done the job of being the best mother she could be. Today, I say with tremendous certainty, and gratitude, she absolutely did."
He ended his emotional tribute with, "It’s time to rest peacefully, mom. I love you, miss you, thank you and will celebrate you, today and always. Forever — your Baby Donnie #RIPAlma 🙏🏼🕊❤️😢."
Mark and Donnie's brother Paul opened a restaurant named Alma in 2010, yet another tribute to the impact she had on her kids.
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