Cleo Valencia Ortiz
1921 – 2017
Our beloved mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend passed away peacefully in her home surrounded by her loving family on Monday, June 19, 2017.
Cleo was born on December 11, 1921, to Eusebio and Carlotta Valencia on the Valencia family ranch near Glorieta, New Mexico. Cleo was preceded in death by her parents, her husband of 66 years, Eustacio “Tacho” Ortiz, Jr., sisters, Eufemia Mares, Eliza Griego and Ramona Maez, brothers Reymeijo, Abran, Seferino, Tony and Max Valencia. In-laws, Eustacio and Anastasia Ortiz, Ernestine Martinez and Mary Archuleta. She is survived by brother, Manuel Valencia and sister, Margie Segura, as well as sister-in-law, Martha Valencia, whom she also considered as a sister.
Cleo is also survived by daughter Loretta (Abe) Lujan, son Armando (Cindy) Ortiz. Grandchildren Mark Lujan, Roxanne and Adrianna Lujan, Amanda Ortiz, Michelle Herrera, and Dominic and Michael Villarreal who she considered grandchildren. One special great grandchild, Paulina Lujan. Cleo is also survived by many loving relatives, nieces, nephews, god children and friends. A caregiver who she loved very much, Eva Pedrosa and all of her family.
In her early years, Cleo was very proud that she drove the school bus during World War II because her brothers were in the military and there was no one to drive the bus. She later received her teaching certificate from New Mexico Highlands University and had very wonderful memories of teaching her students in Glorieta. She then married Tacho on August 26, 1946. Later on, Cleo started working for the U.S. Postal Service as a clerk and then eventually served as Postmaster in Pecos for many years. Cleo and Tacho enjoyed many wonderful years traveling in and out of the country. She was instrumental in helping start a branch of what was then called, Santa Fe Federal Employees Credit Union, out here in Pecos. She loved watching NBA basketball and major league baseball, even if she and Tacho didn’t always support the same teams. She grew up playing cards and continued to entertain herself playing till the end. Singing in the St. Anthony’s church choir is something she enjoyed immensely. She loved visiting with family and friends, and she was blessed with many. Her visits to the Valencia Ranch and reminiscing about “the good old days” always made her day.
A day time visitation will be held at 2:00 pm on Friday, June 23, 2017 at Berardinelli Family Funeral Service, with a recital of the rosary beginning at 3:00 pm. The night time visitation will take place at 6:00pm on Friday, June 23, 2017 at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Pecos with the recital of the rosary beginning at 7:00 pm. The Mass of Christian Burial will take place at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Pecos on Saturday, June 24, 2017 at 11:00am. The committal will take place at St. Anthony’s Cemetery in Pecos immediately after the Mass. Serving as pallbearers will be Armando Ortiz, Abe Lujan, Mark Lujan, Roxanne Lujan, Dominic Villarreal, Michael Villarreal. The family would like to thank the staff at Ambercare out of Las Vegas for all the help and support they provided the past couple of weeks.