- About Us
Margarita Isabel Prieto Puertas was born on July 8, 1931 in the beautiful Old Castilian city of Valladolid, Spain, the Daughter of Nestorio Prieto Santos and Vicenta Puertas y Agundez. She had two wonderful brothers Alvaro Jose and Carlos Felix Prieto Puertas and many loving cousins with whom she shared many happy times.
Her life changed dramatically when her brother Carlos entered her photo in a local beauty contest organized by CIFESA, a noted Spanish film studio. Margarita’s photo at 17 years old was selected from among hundreds of entries and the prize was a small role in a movie called, “Un día perdido”. Although she thoroughly enjoyed her first film experience, her interest was fashion and her desire was modeling. With great courage she wrote a letter to the fashion house of Pedro Rodriguez requesting an interview. She was hired on the spot thus launching her modeling career.
Margarita became high fashion runway model Margot. In the 1950’s Pedro Rodriguez’s haute couture began drawing attention from abroad, particularly from the United States movie stars and European royalty. Margot was introduced to Elizabeth Taylor, Grace Kelly, Vivien Leigh Ava Gardner, Gary Cooper and many American celebrities and European princesses. She walked the runways of Madrid, Barcelona, London and Amsterdam presenting exquisite Spanish haute-couture. Margot had small roles in several movies including “Las muchachas de Azul” and “Los maridos no cenan en casa” and “El hombre que viajaba despacito”.
It was at a dinner party given by her family’s American neighbors that she was introduced to guest Raymond Lee Hanks, a Louisiana native who was in Spain courtesy of the U.S. Air Force. They courted for 2 years and married in Valladolid on June 5, 1957. Raymond and Margarita lived in Madrid for 9 years before settling in Warminster when Raymond retired from the service. They had 4 children, Michael (Denise), Paul (Susie), Elizabeth (Bob) and Raymond (Suellen) and 8 grandchildren, Megan, Patrick, Jennifer, Timothy, Caroline, Amy, Daniel and Gracie.
All throughout her life Margot continued inspiring young women in fashion, etiquette, and self-confidence. She taught at John Robert Powers in Philadelphia as well as many “You’re pretty perfect” classes at the Warminster Park and Rec and privately. Many of her students have kept in touch with her throughout the years recalling the life-long lessons from their beloved teacher.
Margarita’s favorite roles were wife, mother and grandmother. Her grandchildren nicknamed her “Lita” shortened from the Spanish word abuelita. She and Raymond encouraged their children in their education specially to become bilingual. She took great pleasure in teaching her children and grandchildren Spanish refranes, vocabulary and songs. She had a witty sense of humor and could liven any gathering with her interesting conversation and warmth.
Margarita and Raymond moved to Hershey’s Mill in 2000 and loved the tranquil setting. They enjoyed getting together with the extended family and celebrating holidays and birthdays. We will always remember her saying of “Siempre juntos” or Always Together and continue our strong family bond.
Relatives and Friends are invited to her visitation Tuesday February 6, 2018 from 9:30-10:30am at the SS. Peter & Paul Church 1325 Boot Road West Chester, followed by her Funeral Mass at 10:30am. Interment will be private.
In Lieu of Flowers contributions may be made to the Main Line Health Hospice Foundation 240 N. Radnor Chester Road Radnor PA.
Main Line Health Hospice Foundation
240 N. Radnor Chester Road, Radnor PA 19087