Maria Cristela “Chela” Maldonado, 85, went to be with the Lord on Wednesday, May 17, 2023 at her residence with her family at her bedside. She was born in San Diego, Texas on January 18, 1938 to her parents, Eutimio and Jovita Valdez. She graduated from San Diego High School in 1957. Attended Bee County College and got her degree as a LVN. Worked at Alice P & S Hospital in pediatrics, Med-Surgical, ICU & ER. In 1992 transferred to Christus Spohn Freer Clinic where she worked until her retirement after 42 years in Nursing.
Chela was an active member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, was a CCD teacher, Junior Youth Minister, Lector, Extra-Ordinary Minister of the Eucharist, Adult Bible Class Instructor, member of CDA – Court Immaculate Mary’s Heart # 2243 for 38 years, member of the Cursillo movement, and Alter Rosary Society member.
She enjoyed spending time with her loving family which she felt very blessed to have. She loved traveling, helping out with church activities and reading. Her favorite book was the Bible. Chela was a loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend that will be sadly missed by all her family and friends.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 57 years, Teofilo Maldonado Sr.; her parents, Eutimio and Jovita Valdez; her brothers, Eutimio Valdez Jr., Eduardo Perez and Ricardo Perez; her sisters, Oralia Herrera and Edna Mireles; sister-in-law, Ofilia Valdez.
Chela is survived by her three daughters, Rosie (Leo) Escalante, Velma (Mike) Lee, Gracie (Lolo) Cavazos; one son, Teofilo (Sharon) Maldonado Jr.; sister, Justa (Enrique) Valdez; 11 grandchildren, Loralie († Javier) Casas, Amberly (John) Davila, Leanne Longoria, Melissa (Eric) Lopez, Michelle Garcia, Leslie Lovett, Celina Garza, Terri (Thomas) Parker, T.J. (Isabella) Guajardo, Chelsea Maldonado and Ryan Maldonado; 14 great grandchildren; one great great grandchild; numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation will be held from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. on Friday, May 19, 2023 at Garza Funeral Home in Freer, Texas with a Rosary at 7:00 p.m. that evening. Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 20, 2023 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Freer, Texas. Interment will follow at San Diego Cemetery in San Diego, Texas.
The Maldonado family would like to express their heartfelt gratitude for sharing this time of remembrance and celebration of Chela’s life and her impact on each of our lives.
Anyone wishing to leave condolences for the family may do so at www.garzafuneralhome.com
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