Mercedes Chavez Martinez was born at 4:30 in the afternoon, the 24th day of September, 1917 at the home of her parents on Avenida Cuauhtemoc, Cuidad Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico. Mercedes’ parents Miguel and Luz Chavez moved the family to El Paso, Texas in the early 1930s to avoid religious persecution. Mercedes attended and graduated from elementary school at Loretto Academy in El Paso.
On May 4, 1940, Mercedes married the love of her life Emilio Alfonso Martinez, and they raised six children. The children all attended catholic schools through high school and went on to become an engineer, school librarian, Phd. clinical psychologist, wife of a career Army Officer, attorney/jurist, and an isotope radiology technician. Emilio and Mercedes have 19 grandchildren, and 29 greatgrandchildren.
In the early 1950s Mercedes completed the naturalization process and became an American citizen, an accomplishment she was very proud of. Mercedes and Emilio discovered the southern Colorado Rockies and valleys in the early 1970s and in January of 1982 they moved to Almont to their final residence where Emilio enjoyed fishing, volunteer work with the U. S. Forest Service, and visits by his children and grandchildren, and Mercedes enjoyed the vistas of the Gunnison Valley and her home there.
After celebrating her one-hundredth birthday in September 2017, Mercedes passed away on March 27, 2018, six months and three days later. A lifelong devout Catholic, Mercedes loved to grow roses and take in the views from her home in Almont.
A prayer Mass will be held at 11 a.m., Friday, July 20 at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, Gunnison, Colo., with interment immediately thereafter at the Gunnison City Cemetery.
The family requests that persons wishing to make a remembrance of our parents, Emilio and Mercedes send them to the Outreach Program of St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 303 N. Wisconsin, Gunnison, Colo.