Category: Obituaries

In Loving Memory of Joe Montano

Joe Montano, age 78, died Thursday, June 26, 2014 in Clayton, NM. 

Memorial Rosary will be recited at 10:00 AM on Saturday, June 28 and Mass of Christian Burial will follow at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Clayton with Fr. Joel Bugas, Celebrant. Arrangements are under the direction of Hass Funeral Directors of Clayton. 

Joe M. Montano was born on September 12, 1935 in Miera, New Mexico. He was raised by his blind grandmother Agatha Montoya. He married Teresina Marie (Sanchez) Montano on December 1, 1956 at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Clayton, New Mexico where he was a member as well as a member of the Knights of Columbus. Joe was a bus driver for 35 years, he worked 11 years at the Union County Courthouse, and worked for the 5 states livestock auction, and drove an escort vehicle for Willie Sanford. They worked a ranch for 18 years for Hugh Pogue and Sam Edmondson and later for Bill and John Doherty. He loved working outdoors and his therapy was cutting wood. He enjoyed working on the ranch where his God given talent was being on the caterpillar building dams. Joe took pride in his work. His hobbies were barb wire and arrow head collecting, welding art work and sitting on the front porch to watch traffic. He loved his personalized vehicles and had a passion for antiquing and auctions. We are going to miss all of his jokes. Joe was preceded in death by his grandmother; Agatha Montoya, Step-father; Ray Padilla, Mother; Lucy Padilla, sister; Beatrice Aragon, brother; Joe Louis Padilla, father-in-law; Eno Sanchez, mother-in-law; Adela Sanchez, brothers-in-law; Raymond Sanchez, Manuel Martinez, Nestor Cordova, Sisters-in-law; Adelina Armijo and her husband Arthur and Gloria Espinoza. 


WIFE: Teresina Montano of Clayton, New Mexico. 

4 DAUGHTERS: Priscilla McLeroy of Angel Fire, New Mexico, Levina Herr and her husband Ronald of Amarillo, Texas, Kathryn Montoya of Raton, New Mexico and Lucinda Avila and her husband Mark of Colorado Springs, Colorado. 

1 SON: Joe Montano and his wife Carolyn of Clayton, New Mexico. 

Grandchildren: James McLeroy, Kathleen McLeroy, Andrew Herr and his wife Kaili, Anthony Herr, Harlen Herr, Ali Herr, Angelique Herr, Kayla Montoya, Shane Montoya, Jay Dylan Muse, Brittany Davidson and her husband Zac, Cutter Montano, Felysse Montano, Tanner Montano, Ady Avila and Molly Avila. 
Great-Grandchildren: Audrey Herr, Angel Vidal Montoya, Andre L. Montoya, Adrian Sanchez, Lennox Muse and Avery Davidson. 

2 Brothers: Toby Padilla and his wife Teresa and Floyd Padilla and his wife Maryann. 

3 Sisters: Marie Miera and her husband Arnold, Bertha Padilla and Corrine Trujillo and her husband Eddie. 

Brothers-in-law: Eloy Gonzales and his wife Gloria, Bennie Sanchez, Daniel Sanchez and Charles Espinoza. 

Sisters-in-law: Beatrice Martinez, Lillian Cordova, Eloise Sisneros and her husband George, Carmen Sisneros and her husband Johnnie and Sandra Padilla. 

And numerous nieces and nephews. 

MEMORIALS: The family asks that in Lieu of flowers, memorials be made to the Joe Montano Scholarship fund at Farmers and Stockmans Bank.

In Loving Memory of Frances C. Aguirre

Frances C. Aguirre age 67 of Raton passed away on Saturday June 14th, 2014 in Albuquerque, NM after succumbing to complicated medical issues. She was born on February 14th, 1947 in Raton to Luke Salazar and Cora Barela.

Frances is preceded in death by her parents, brother Luke Salazar, Jr., sister Berdina Burgess, Nephew Jeffery Salazar, and partner Anthony Sam Martinez. She is survived by sons; John Fred Salazar and wife Mia of Raton, George (Pepper) Aguirre of Raton, Michael Salazar of Santa Rosa, daughter Christina Aguirre Romero of Raton, Step-father Chris Gonzales of Raton, grandchildren Jaziah Salazar, Ryanna Muniz, Lorenna Gutierrez, Jesse Aguirre, Keira Romero, Neveah Romero, Elisio Romero, Nathanial Salazar, Alex Medina, Domingo Saenz, Josalynne, Isaac, Thomas, and Michael. Brothers; Jimmy Gonzales and wife Bobbie of Raton, George Nick Salazar and wife Loretta of Raton, Pat Gonzales of Raton, Amos Salazar of Raton, Johnny Salazar and wife Sandra of Raton, David (Spider) Salazar of Albuquerque, Sisters; Kathy Gonzales and Joe of Alamosa, Theresa Salazar of Washington, Rachel Martinez and husband Louie of Washington, numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins also survive.

Recitation of the Most Holy Rosary will be held on Friday June 27th at 9am followed by the Solemn Mass of the Resurrection at 9:30am. Rite of Committal and Inurnment to follow at Mt. Calvary Cemetery.

Local arrangements are under the direction of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Nelma Lee Martin

Nelma Lee Martin, 76, died at her home in Raton, New Mexico, June 19, 2014. She was accompanied in death by her faithful dogs, Boomer, Hobie and Little Lady.

Nelma was born October 21, 1937 in Red Oak, Oklahoma. She was preceded in death by her parents, Clyde Lee Martin and Eula Irene Coy, sister Velma Jean Griffith and brothers Randy Steven Martin and Clyde Lee Martin, Jr.

She is survived by her children: Martin Wayne Muse (Loretta) of Des Moines; James Kent Muse of Raton, and daughter Angelica Alirez (Joe) of Las Vegas. She is survived by grandchildren Paul Abrain Nigg, Jay Dylan Muse, and Lillian, Joe, Riley and Adalyn Alirez and by three great-grandchildren. She is also survived by sisters Thelma Coker of Cimarron and Jody Jones (Gene) of Clovis and by many nieces and nephews and a host of faithful friends.

Nelma Lee grew up in Red Oak, Oklahoma. She attended Red Oak High School and then Oklahoma City Business College. She spent 27 years working for the State of New Mexico in the Human Services Department Income Support Division. Nelma provided a home for over 30 foster children and fell in love with each one of them. She was always “Sissy” to her family and she was an artist with her yarn and crochet hook. She loved talking and socializing and she always had time for a conversation with a friend. She was a member of the Raton Church of Christ. Her family wishes to thank special friends who offered continuing comfort and support and daily conversation during her years of invalidism: Nancy Fry, Pearl Ulibarri, Clara Lester, Ward Shrake, Kathryn Karnowsky, and Helen Vukonich.

Cremation has taken place and a private family inurnment will take place at Cimarron Mountain View Cemetery at a future date. Friends who wish to honor Nelma Lee may contribute to the American Cancer Society Relay for Life or to the Raton Humane Society.

Arrangements for Nelma Lee Martin are under the care and direction of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Maria Ediria LaCombe

Maria Ediria Maria Ediria LaCombe age 94 of Springer passed away on June 19th, 2014 in Springer, New Mexico. She was born on October 21st, 1919 to Victoranio and Eufemia Herrera in San Acacio, CO.

Ediria married Alfonso LaCombe on December 17th 1938 and they lived in San Luis, Colorado until 1985. They were married 65 years. Alfonso passed away September 25, 2003.

Ediria was a homemaker and enjoyed making quilts and crafts. She worked side by side with her husband in their weekly newspaper (The Costilla County Free Press) for 50 years. When they retired they moved to Denver until 1997 then moved to Springer, NM.

Ediria is survived by two sons Andrew LaCombe and wife Sylvia, and Dominic LaCombe, two grandsons; Carl and Alan, two great grandsons; Timothy and Christopher, one brother Victor, one sister Bernie Olivas, several nephews and nieces and a very trusted friend Mary McCarty whom she loved like a daughter, and one sister-in-law Ida Vigil.

Cremation has taken place and inurnment will take place at a later date in San Luis, Colorado.

Arrangements for Maria Ediria LaCombe are under the direction of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.


In Loving Memory of Johnny Rivera

Johnny Rivera of Springer, NM, age 61, passed away on June 18, 2014 at his home.

He was born on June 26, 1952 in Folsom, NM to Joe and Mary Rivera.

He was preceded in death by his son, Michael John Rivera,

his father, Joe A. Rivera, his grandparents, Jeronimo & Guillerma Lopez and

Porfirio & Sofronia Rivera.

He was survived by his wife, Gloria Rivera, his four daughters, Leanne Fernandez,

Crissy Rivera, Melissa Martinez, and Amanda Rivera; his grandchildren, Matthew Rivera,

Mariah Martinez, Alyah Martinez, Jacob Chavez, Analees Chavez, John Samuel Martinez,

and Noah Deschamps, and one great grandchild on the way; He is also survived by his

mother, Mary Rivera, and his only brother, David (Julie) Rivera and several nieces &

nephews along with many other relatives & friends


Services will be held Wednesday, June 25, 2014 @ 10:00 am at St. Joseph’s Church in

Folsom, NM with burial to follow at the Folsom Catholic Cemetery.

In Loving Memory of John Paul Ulibarri

JOHN PAUL ULIBARRI John Paul Ulibarri 39, of Phoenix, AZ passed away on June 3, 2014. He was born on August 9, 1974 in Raton, NM to Rosabel and Andrew Ulibarri. He was preceded in death by his father, Andrew Ulibarri. He is survived by his mother, Rosabel Ulibarri, sister, Jackie Lujan (Albert), brother, Randy Ulibarri (Nicole) nieces, Brandi Ulibarri and Azariah Blaubach and nephew, Michael Chavez . A Rosary will be held on Saturday, June 21, 2014 at 8:30a.m. followed by a Mass at 9a.m. at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Pecos, NM. Burial will take place in the St. Anthony’s Catholic Cemetery in Pecos, NM immediately following the Mass.

In Loving Memory of Edward Cipriano Montoya

Edward Cipriano Montoya age 93 of Springer, New Mexico passed away on June 14, 2014 in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was born on March 11, 1921 to Margarito and Rosa Montoya in Sweetwater, New Mexico. Ed was lost in a snow storm at the age of 4 years. He went north from the white house for about a mile and it started snowing. His mother found him cuddled at the corner of a fence.

While growing up, he lived with his grandparents, JT and Millie Fernandez. He remembered taking a handful of cookies and hiding under the bed. It took them a while to find him.

One of his chores was to dispose of the ashes. He used a shovel to dig a hole outside to throw the ashes in. He always remembered the time he hit his toe with the shovel and cried all afternoon. At the age of 10, to took care of the sheep after attending Colmor Schools all day and earned 50 cents a day for sheep herding.

He went back to live with his mom and dad after they had no more boys living at home. They moved to Miami, New Mexico and he attended Miami Schools. When he got growing pains at night, he would wake his sister Margaret up and they would go for walks in the night to relieve him of his growing pains.

He went back to live with his grandparents and attended school in Colmor again. He used to get walloped at Miami Schools, so when he went back to Colmor, kids tried to beat him up and he somehow found the gumption to defend himself, so no one picked on him again. Ed was living with his folks and remembered sheep herding alone. He didn’t read the instructions on the baking powder when cooking for himself and the biscuits he made turned out hard as rocks. He had been warned to keep the sheep away from Mr. White s land. His parents would check on him every 3 or 4 days. When it would lightening and thunder, he would recite a little prayer that an old sheep herder had taught him and he wouldn’t be scared and thought the prayer kept him safe. After his parents bought land at Taylor Springs, he and his sister would break all the horses they could get their hands on.

He graduated from Springer High School in 1939 and enrolled in a business school that was a branch of a Texas University in Clovis, New Mexico. He got his girlfriend Esther Arellano to enroll in school and before leaving Clovis, they were married in 1940.

Their first child, Edward Francis Montoya, was born in 1942. Edward went to work in Rosebud at the ranch of Lieutenant Governor Edward C de Baca and the boss advised him to keep the mules from slowing through the sand. After leaving his job in Rosebud, he came to work in Springer at Boyd s coffee shop washing dishes and making pies. Ed moved on to working for Mr. Van Dyke out at French Tract. Mr. Van Dyke raised registered Herefords. While working for Mr. Van Dyke, his second son, Antonio Roy Louis was born.

His grandmother passed away and his grandfather asked Ed to work for him at Sweetwater, but at the same time he was working for mom and dad in Sweetwater and then he went on his own raising sheep that he had to pasture in Mora, due to dry conditions. During that time he lost 66 ewes and 100 head of lambs because someone had gotten his sheep herder drunk. But neither Ed nor the cattle inspector ever found out who took the lost sheep. He drove the whole herd to MacArthur s in Wagon Mound and sold them. While he was a sheep rancher, his daughters Christina Marie and Rita Mae (Jo-Jo) were born. With the birth of each of his children, Ed was absolutely joyous.

Ed got a job with the Bureau of Revenue, where he worked for four years. He came back to Springer and worked for the New Mexico Boy s School for 22 and a half years, until he retired from that job.

He would deliver gas and oil for his brother Louis and when his brother passed away, he inherited the gas and oil business, which he ran from 1982 till 1992. He sold the gas and oil business upon retiring from the Boy s School. During those two jobs, he continued to raise cattle on his own from 1968 until 1996.

His beloved Esther passed away in March of 1996. Since that time he has enjoyed companionship and friendship with a special lady, Odilia Romero. Together they took a cruise to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and also traveled to Spain and Portugal with his son Tony and daughter-in-law Lucille.

Ed is survived by his four children: Ed, Tony, Christina and Rita Mae. He is also survived by 12 grandchildren: Cindy, Eddie Boy, Tony, Shawn, Antoinette, Michelle, Tina Marie, Georgianna, Isidro, Russell, Jose Antonio Gordo , and Ruth Ann; 17 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great grandchild.

Edward was a member of St. Joseph s Catholic Church in Springer, a proud member of the Knight s of Columbus, and attended Springer Senior Citizens Center. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sister Margaret Fernandez and brother Roy Louis Montoya. His sisters Mary Ellen Redman and Mary Ann Hunter survive him, as well as numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and community members.

In lieu of flowers, Edward requested that donations be made to the Springer Knights of Columbus, Springer Senior Citizens Center or St. Joseph s Catholic Church of Springer. Services will consist of a viewing at the Alderette-Pomeroy Funeral Home in Raton, New Mexico from 12:00 noon till 2:00 p.m. on Friday, June 20, 2014. A rosary will be held at St. Joseph s Church in Springer, New Mexico at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, June 20th with a funeral mass to follow at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 21, 2014, with Father Emmanuel Izuka as the celebrant and Father Daniel Balizan as the co-celebrant. Cremation and private burial will take place at a later date.

The arrangements for Edward C. Montoya are under the direction of the Alderette-Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Janet Elaine Wheeler

Janet Elaine Wheeler, age 79, went home to her Lord and Savior on June 4, 2014.

Memorial Services will be held at Restoration Fellowship Church, 10200 Album Ave. El Paso, Texas on Tuesday June 10, 2014 at 6:00 PM. Visitation from 5 to 6pm.

Jan was born on December 23, 1934, the daughter of Walter L and Maurine Adams in Clayton, New Mexico. She attended New Mexico State on a Music Scholarship and was a gifted musician throughout her life. Jan moved to El Paso in 1960 where she raised her children. Jan touched many people in her life working 50 years in her community. As Assistant Sun Bowl Director she was a key member in the annual Sun Bowl Festivals, coordination of the Sun Bowl parade and Sun Bowl Queen pageant. Her expertise in coordinating parades sent her across America and to foreign countries. From there Jan went on to Yselta Independent School to support the principals, staff and students at Eastwood Knolls and Rio Bravo. She was also a faithful Sunday School teacher for the 3 year old kids at Cielo Vista Church. She loved life, was no bigger than a minute and was an avid football fan. Jan went to join the following family members in Heaven: her parents; Walter and Maurine Adams, brother; Arthur Lawrence Adams, 2 sisters; Sylvia Adams and Deanne Knotts, brother-in-law; Ken Serratt, sister-in-law; Donna Adams and nephew; David Knotts.


1 DAUGHTER: Kay Wilkins and her husband Larry

5 SONS: Kenny Wheeler and his wife Alma, James Wheeler and his wife Karen, Walter Wheeler, Jon Wheeler and his wife Norma and Joe Wheeler and his wife Alison.

2 SISTER: Beth Serratt and Karen Smith and her husband Mike.

1 BROTHER: Jim Adams

21 GRANDCHILDREN: Kay’s children; Jennifer, Jacob, Jason, Michael and Ryan, Kenny’s children; Kennah, Sibone and Jacob, James’ children; Robyn and Robby, Walter’s son; Jeff, Jon’s children; Amanda, Joseph, Albert, Julian and Jonah and Joe’s children; Michael, Justin, Jared and Ezra.

14 Great-grandchildren and Many beautiful loved nieces and nephews

In Loving Memory of Adelina Montoya

Adelina Montoya, age 76, died on Sunday, June 8, 2014 in Amarillo, Texas. 

SERVICES: Rosary will be recited at 7:00 PM on Thursday, June 12 by Deacon P. Louis Montoya and Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 AM on Friday, June 13, at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Clayton with Fr. Joel Bugas, Celebrant. Burial will follow in the Clayton Memorial Cemetery by Hass Funeral Directors of Clayton. Please visit www.hassfuneralhome.com to view the online obituary and sign the guest book.

Adelina (Gonzales) Montoya was born on April 29, 1928 in Clayton, New Mexico to Vicente Gonzales and Annie (Montoya) Gonzales. A lifelong resident of Clayton, New Mexico, Adelina married Felix Montoya on December 24, 1954 in Clayton, New Mexico. Adelina worked at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Clayton and later at Union County General Hospital as a nurses aide. After raising her children, Adelina earned her certification as a respiratory therapist when she was fifty and retired when she was seventy. For many years she was the head of Materials Management and the Respiratory Departments at Union County General Hospital. She was a member of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Clayton. Adelina was preceded in death by her parents and by 8 brothers; Richard Gonzales, Demetrio Gonzales, Manual Gonzales, George Gonzales, David Gonzales, Freddie Gonzales, Tony Gonzales and Vicente Elias Gonzales, Jr.

 SURVIVORS HUSBAND: Felix Montoya of Clayton, New Mexico.

 4 DAUGHTERS: Ramona Gallegos and her husband Juan, Ursula Brown and her husband David and Jerrah Montoya all of Clayton, New Mexico and Debbie Montoya and her husband Michael of Albuquerque, New Mexico.

 4 SONS: Alex Montoya and his wife Claudia, Michael Montoya,  Charles Montoya and Jeremy Montoya and his wife Pauline all of Clayton, New Mexico.

 1 SISTER: Mary Lou Dominguez and her husband Joe of Dumas, Texas.

 1 BROTHER: Florencio Gonzales and his wife Lali of Liberal, Kansas.

 18 Grandchildren, 21 Great-Grandchildren, 1 Great-Great-Grandchild

 And numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.

In Loving Memory of Edra Phillips

Edra Phillips age 106 of Raton, NM passed away on June 5th, 2014 at the MCMC Long Term Care Facility. She had been a resident there for the past 8 years.

Edra was born on February 23, 1908 in Casey, IL. The second child of six to Mary and Albert Smith. She married Ralph Phillips in the summer of 1928 three daughters; Betty, Marilyn, and Sandra and one son Ray Ugene came from that union.

Ralph and Edra moved to Raton in the fall of 1943. Edra worked as a cook and waitress for many years and was well known in the community. She was a member of the Nazarene and United Methodist Churches. Her Faith was very strong and carried her through.

Edra was preceded in death by her parents, husband Ralph in 1951, daughters Betty in 1997, Marilyn in 1999, son Ray Ugene in 2013, granddaughters Kathy in 1997 and Sharon in 2011, son-in-law Lloyd in 2002, 3 brothers, 2 sisters, some nieces and nephews.

Edra is survived by her daughter Sandra Chavez and husband James of Gilbert, AZ; one brother A.V. Smith of Kansas City, KS; daughter-in-law Glenna Phillips of Biloxi, MS; 6 grandchildren; Gary, Ralph, and Larry Phillips, James and Tim Chavez, and Karen Nauto, 8 great grandchildren, 7 great great grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews, and Edra will be sorely missed by special friends Trella and John Graham.

Visitation will be on Tuesday June 10th, 2014 in the chapel of the Alderette Pomeroy funeral Home from 2 to 6pm. A funeral service will be held on Wednesday June 11th, 2014 in the chapel of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home at 2pm. Burial will follow at Fairmont Cemetery.

Arrangements for Edra Phillips are under the care and direction of the Alderette Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.