Lotario Leo Castillo


Lotario Leo Castillo

Lotario Leo Castillo was born and raised in Belen.

He was preceded in death by his father and mother, Ricardo and Mary Castillo, both of Belen; his dear sister, Gloria Castillo Kaddison and brother-in-law, Ellis Kaddison, both of Hollywood, Calif.; and his two sisters-in-law, Regina Castillo, of Belen; and Ruth Castillo, of Albuquerque.

Leo attended the New Mexico Military Institute, a private men’s boarding school, during his high school years. He was both a serious and stellar student, displaying a voracious appetite for reading and an outstanding ability for writing. He attended the University of New Mexico, where he studied history and psychology. Leo would remain a lifelong student of both these subjects.

Shortly after college, Leo escorted his sister, Gloria Castillo, to Hollywood, where she was hoping to embark on a career in motion pictures. Leo was photogenic, with chiseled features and sandy, blonde hair, and had a winsome personality. A career in film seemed like a viable option.

Within a year of arriving in Hollywood, Leo landed his first film role. The prospect of an acting career diminished as work in television and film proved sporadic over the next five years. In his final television role in 1958, Leo starred in an NBC-TV Matinee Theater production portraying the role of a young man in the episode “A Boy Grows Up.” He departed the film industry for good in 1967 after working as a production assistant.

When his sister, Gloria, launched her new career as the fashion designer named Chessa Davis, she enlisted Leo to help her in sales. It was a strong match with Gloria’s exquisite designs and Leo’s natural genius for navigating the fashion wholesale market. He worked with editors, trade publications and fashion industry insiders and was able to obtain highly sought-after 5th Avenue store window displays in New York’s luxury department stores.

Leo was instrumental in persuading key buyers and their management at Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf-Goodman, and Lord & Taylor to showcase Chessa Davis designs for extended periods in their most visible flagship stores. By 1976, Chessa Davis designs had catapulted to the national and international forefront with customers such as Mary Tyler Moore, Betty Ford and Princess Grace.

The year that followed this staggering success was a sad one, as his sister, Gloria, contracted cancer and passed away. This was a heartbreak that Leo would endure until his last days.

Leo left the fashion market and began a new career selling high-priced, rare gems, often in the seven figures, to investors and clients in New York, Palm Beach and Beverley Hills. Leo eventually achieved a stellar position as the top salesman for the country’s premiere jewelers Harry Winston and Van Cleef & Arpels, with exclusive Forbes 400 clientele. Many of the clients he associated with became close personal friends.

Always the student, Leo was near encyclopedic about classical music, opera, literature and psychology. He took courses at NYU and UCLA, traveled and spent months abroad studying French and world history at Alliance Française in Paris. A wide and deep consumption of art, literature and music was an essential part of his life’s work.

Leo brought joy to all who had the pleasure of knowing him.

He is beloved by his two dear brothers, Dr. Robert Castillo, of Albuquerque; and Francis Leonard Castillo, of Belen; by his many nieces and nephews, and his countless friends. His gentleness and kindness will be remembered fondly in their hearts, and his love of political discussion will be greatly missed.

Services will take place at Our Lady of Belen Catholic Church on Saturday, Aug. 31, beginning with a visitation at 9 a.m., Rosary to be recited at 10 a.m., a Funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m., and interment to follow at Our Lady of Belen Memorial Gardens.

Please sign Leo’s online tribute at romerofuneralhomenm.com. Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Rodger Gelder


Rodger Gelder was 87 years old and a resident of Valencia County. He passed away on Aug. 22, 2019.

Rodger was a member of Peralta Methodist Church. Rodger Gelder was born on Feb. 28, 1932. He grew up on a farm near Hammonds Port, N.Y., in the Finger Lakes area. He learned to fly as a young teen and got his license at the age of 15.

Later, Rodger joined the Air Force and after four years, he went to college and received a four-year degree in electrical engineering. After college, Rodger came to New Mexico to work at Sandia Laboratories. After 15 years of employment there, he took early retirement to pursue his dream, working in aviation.

Rodger built his dream home at Midvalley Airpark and got his general contractor license. Over the years, he built nine homes there at Midvalley Airpark. After building his first home, Rodger started the AERO flying club at MVAP, which later moved to the Albuquerque International Airport, where he ran a flight school. There, he also sold and rented general aviation aircraft.

Rodger closed his business and moved back to Midvalley Airpark. He and his wife resided there for the past 30 years, where they felt fortunate and blessed to live.

Rodger was preceded in death by his son, Thomas Gelder.

He is survived by his wife, Glenna Giles Gelder; his son, Michael Gelder and wife, Tonya; sons, Alan and Jeff Gelder.

No funeral services are scheduled. Interment will take place at Santa Fe National Cemetery at 11:15 a.m., Monday, Sept. 9.

Arrangements are being handled by the caring professionals at Noblin Funeral Service Los Lunas Chapel, 2211-D Main St., 866-9992, noblin.com

Patricia L. Gonzales

Patricia L. Gonzales


Patricia L. Gonzales, age 74, a resident of Los Lunas, and a member of San Clemente Catholic Church, passed away Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019.

Services are pending. Please contact Romero Funeral Home for information (505)864-8501.

Please sign Patricia’s online tribute at romerofuneralhomenm.com. Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Matthew Randell Gurule


Matthew Randell Gurule

Matthew Randell Gurule, 32, a resident of Belen, passed away on Aug. 17, 2019.

While he was considered a newer resident of Belen, Matthew had resided in both Santa Fe and the Waco, Texas. Matthew was born on Jan. 12, 1987, in Albuquerque, to Matthew B. and Sandra B. Gurule.

He moved to Texas in 1996 with his mother and sister when he was in the third grade. He graduated from China Spring High School in 2004. He then joined the Marine Corps on Nov. 7, 2005, in Waco, Texas.

While serving his country with the Marine Corps, he started out in the 2/5 Fox Company; he served in Iraq in 2006, Operation Iraq/Enduring Freedom from March 17 to Oct. 26, 2007. He served on a MEU in 2008. Following this, he volunteered to serve in Afghanistan with the 1/5 Geronimo Company from May 26 to Dec. 16, 2009, where the Marines ran the Taliban out of Afghanistan. During his time as a Marine, his specialty was rifleman. “A Solid Marine.”

He is decorated with the following: Combat Action Ribbon (Afghanistan), Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with two stars, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with one star, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal (Iraq), Iraq Campaign with one star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, NATO Medal ISAF Afghanistan, Certificate of Appreciation, Letter of Appreciation with Rifle Marksman Badge.

Matthew was proud to be in the 5th Marine Regiment as they had the honor to wear the “French Fourragere” for actions during World War I. In 1918, the 5th Marine Regiment along with the 6th Marine Regiment fought heroically in three separate battles as part of the Marine Brigade of the American Expeditionary Force.

“Being recognized with three awards, (the Regiment) was permanently awarded with the French Fourragere to wear and maintain on their uniform for all time after World War I,” said Col. Jason Bohm, commanding officer of the 5th Marines.

He received his certification as a horse farrier at Lookout Mountain School of Horseshoeing in Alabama in October 2012. He wanted to have a trade that he could use alongside his dad at the racetrack at The Albuquerque Downs. He worked as an apprentice under local horse farrier Pete Carabajal from 2013-16.

Most recently, he got the job he had been looking to find that he could use his hands and his mind, and have another trade under his belt. He was hired on as a masonry with Cameron Driggers of Cameron’s Custom Homes.

Matthew was very intrigued with history and read and studied all aspects of history. One of his favorite subjects was “The Templers,” The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon, also known as the Order of Solomon’s Temple, the Knights Templar or simply the Templars, were a Catholic military order.

Genghis Khan and the Mongol Empire was another subject he studied. Mongol warriors would use their stirrup technique of shooting arrows when the galloping horse would have all four feet off the ground, thus ensuring a steady, well-aimed shot. (This is what he taught me that the Mongols invented stirrups for this purpose.) Since I rode horses, he thought I should know this.

Matthew was very much a Catholic and studied the history to its core. Most of all, Matthew was intellectual, fun-loving, caring person, who loved his family. He never met a stranger; everyone was his family and he brought several people home to meet “The Majha.”

He loved to dance like no one was watching and this started at his grandfather’s (Louis) political functions. Everyone would clear the floor to watch him dance, sing like Steve Miller (Steve Miller Band), and cook like it was our last meal! He always made “The Good Stuff,” which included a good batch of salsa or red chile for enchiladas.

We can’t forget the steak and tightly-wrapped, seasoned, baked potatoes with seasoned mushrooms, and then of course, the green chile spaghetti. He loved my lasagna and would try to perfect his own. He loved German chocolate cake and root beer. He loved a good pot of coffee and used a variety of flavors of creamer with lots of sugar.

If he was available, he would pitch in to help with a catering gig for his uncle, Brad, or family or political functions. He was always down to make political signs. He would lend anyone who needed a helping hand.

Matthew made everyone smile. Matthew loved to sing karaoke, visit with his family and friends, and make the most out of every experience. He liked traditions and we made our own traditions whenever possible. He would show up to “represent” us at a family functions when I was in Texas and could not attend, occasions as small as a 1-year-old’s birthday party.

In the Corps, I know they called him “The Frog,” “Frogman” or “Ja Rule,” “El Mateo” or “The Raccoon.”

Matthew is preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Jose H. Gurule; paternal grandmother, Maria F. Estrada; father, Matthew B. Gurule; and brother, Rick E. Warden.

He is survived by his maternal grandparents, Louis and Bea Gallegos; mother, Sandra Beatriz Miller (Gallegos) and Casey Willis; sister, Rheanna Gurule and fiancé, Frank Rosales; stepsisters, Amanda and husband SSG Daniel Bratten and children, and Sara and husband, Chris Honea and children; extended family, Tiffany Howard and children; nieces and nephews, Alyssa M. Ramirez, Ariana Sofia Rosales, Natalee and Nalanie Rosales; uncles and aunts, Edward and Evanne Gallegos, Cynthia and Frank Gallegos, Brian and Becky Gallegos, Brad Gallegos and Raquel Miramontes, Bruce Gallegos, Lawrence Gallegos and Melissa Jose, Debbie Gallegos, Terry Sanchez, Barbara and Henry Sandoval, Lita and James Mickle and Patricia Moore; numerous great aunts, uncles, cousins and friends, who all loved him dearly; his loving dog, Matilda; and finally his Marine brothers. Semper Fi! You know who you are!

A Rosary will be recited at 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Rivera Family Funeral Home, 417 Rodeo Road, Santa Fe.

A visitation will be held at Calvary Chapel Rio Grande Valley at 8 a.m., Friday, Aug. 30, with a celebration of his life to follow at 9 a.m. Interment will follow at Santa Fe National Cemetery at 12:45 p.m.

Arrangements are being handled by the caring professionals at the Noblin Funeral Service Belen Chapel, 418 W. Reinken Ave., 864-4448, where an online guest register is available at noblin.com.

Charles V. Harris


Charles V. Harris

Charles V. Harris, of Los Lunas, passed away on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019, at the age of 91, after a long illness.

He was born Jan. 12, 1928, in Danville, Ill., the oldest of three children born to Henry and Opal Harris. Charles joins his beloved wife, Eula.

He is survived by his four children, 11 grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren, a sister and numerous nieces and nephews. Chuck will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 31, at the First United Methodist Church in Belen.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Chuck’s name be made to the First United Methodist in Belen or a charity of your choice.

Arrangements are being handled by the caring professionals at the Noblin Funeral Service Belen Chapel, 418 W. Reinken Ave., 864-4448, where an online guest register is available at noblin.com.

Joseph A. Jaramillo

Died 2019

Joseph A. Jaramillo

“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and there will no longer be death; there will no longer be sorrow and anguish, or crying or pain, for the former order of things has passed away.” (Revelation 21:4).

Reinaldo E. Garcia, also known as Joseph A. Jaramillo, 39, a resident of Belen, was called home Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019.

Joseph married Patricia Jaramillo, his best friend. Joseph was strong, loving and kind. He enjoyed looking for antiques and was very intrigued with archeology.

Joseph loved his nieces and nephews immensely; he loved spending time with them and teaching them all he knew about archaeology. Joseph enjoyed camping and spending time outdoors.

He loved his sister, April’s cooking. He had a close bond with his mom. Joseph loved God with all his heart and he loved his family to no end. Joseph fought the good fight, he finished his course and he kept his faith.

Joseph was preceded in death by his father, David Jaramillo; and biological dad, Henry Garcia; his grandpa, Ernie Montoya; and grandmother, Theresa Montoya.

He is survived by his mother, Christine Jaramillo; biological mom, Maria Navarrette; his three siblings, Matthew Jaramillo (Carolyn), April Mirabal (Onecimo) and Brenda Schmidt (Eric); 17 loving nieces and nephews; Matthew Jr., Noah, Jeremiah, Tyler, Ariana, Onecimo, Damine, Giovanni, Daisy, Destinie, Tony, David Jr., Jacob, Andrea, Josiah; great nieces, Marie and Ellie; as well as his many other loved ones, including aunts, uncles and friends.

Pallbearers will be Peter Montoya, Paul Montoya, April Mirabal, Matthew Jaramillo, Noah Jaramillo and Onecimo Mirabal. Honorary pallbearers will be Matthew Jr., Tyler, Jeremiah, Damien and Giovanni.

All services will take place on Tuesday, Sept. 3, beginning with a viewing 9:30 a.m. at Freedom Worship Center, located at 727 Cortez St. SW, Los Lunas, with the funeral service at 10 a.m. Interment will follow at Our Lady of Belen Memorial Gardens.

Maria “Flo” Florella Miller


Maria “Flo” Florella Miller

Maria “Flo” Florella Miller, 74, of Cove, Ark., died Thursday, Aug. 8, at her home. She was born on Thursday, Jan. 25, 1945, to Jose Daniel and Crisofora Jaramillo Olguin in Jarales.

Maria was a member of Christ’s Church in Cove and regularly taught Sunday school and bible study. Her faith and family meant everything to her and gave her great joy.

Maria spent much of her life farming and 10 years as a USPS mail carrier in Cove. She was proud to be a classroom grandparent at Wickes and Vandervoot, and she loved to read and cook, especially her delicious enchiladas.

She was feisty and fun. She was someone you wanted on your side. Maria was a loving mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and a great friend, and will be missed by all who knew her.

She is preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, Daniel Olguin and Ernesto Olguin, and one sister, Aurelia Jaramillo.

Maria is survived by her loving husband of 55 years, Wayne Miller of Cove; two sons and daughter-in-law, Lonnie and Deanna Miller of Cove, and Paul Miller of Cove; one daughter and son-in-law, Le-Ann and Robby Holmes of Mena; five sisters, Angelina Sanchez (Sonny) of Jarales, Perfilia Ulibarri (Robert) of Veguita, Celina Abeyta (Abran) of Jarales, Viola Vaisa (Steve) of Valencia, and Gloria Cordova of Belen; one brother, Frank Olguin (Tammy) of Jarales; nine grandchildren, Brooke Sanchez (Hugo) of Mena, Joseph Miller (Taylor) of Cove, Harley Burgett (Tyler) of Hoxie, Gene Miller of Hoxie, J.T. Miller of Cove, Ashton Miller of Horatio, Nick Holmes of Mena, Jared Holmes of Fort Smith and Caleb Holmes of Mena; four great grandchildren; several nieces and nephews and a host of other relatives and friends.

You will hear Florella is dead! Don’t you believe a word of it! At that moment I shall be more alive than I am now; I shall have gone up higher, that is all, out of this old clay tenement into a house that is immortal — a body that death cannot touch or taint: a body fashioned like unto His glorious body.

Services were held on Sunday, Aug. 18, at Christ’s Church.

Oralia Chavez Otero


Oralia Chavez Otero

Oralia Chavez Otero, age 93, a resident of Los Lunas, passed away on Friday, Aug. 23, 2019, surrounded by her loving family.

She was a member of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Peralta. Oralia was a member of the Saint Vincent de Paul Catholic Association, as well as the Peralta Legion of Mary, where she devoted time to visiting the sick and the elderly.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Raymond Otero; son, Carlos Otero; parents, Elias Chavez and Felis Rael Chavez; six siblings, Wences Chavez, Armida Otero, Merlinda Perea, Eddie, Edwin and Elmer Chavez.

Oralia is survived by her loving children, Emilio (Violet) Otero, Theresa (Don) Murray, Prescilla (Don) DiPaola and Richard (Nick) Otero; 11 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her five loving sisters, Clarita Lopez, Mabel Pena, Reina Garley, Bernie Beatty and Laura Padilla; brothers-in-law, Paul Beatty and Marco Morales; and many loving nieces and nephews.

Services will take place on Friday, Aug. 30, at our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Peralta, beginning with a visitation from 9-10 a.m., a Rosary to be recited at 10 a.m., a Funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m. and interment to follow at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Cemetery.

Urn bearers will be her loving grandchildren.

Donations can be made to OLOG Peralta Catholic Church Building Fund in memory of Oralia Otero, 3674 N.M. 47, Peralta, NM, 87042.

Please sign Oralia’s online tribute at romerofuneralhomenm.com Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Ellen “Ellie” K. Syvertson

Died 2019

Ellen “Ellie” K. Syvertson

Ellen “Ellie” K. Syvertson, a longtime resident of Los Lunas, died on Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019, at Presbyterian Hospital. She was 67 years old.

Born in Barnesville, Minn., Ellie moved to New Mexico and received her master’s degree in journalism from UNM. She went onto to open and operate Flyer Press and the Valencia County Flyer.

She was tough and direct, but Ellie was also generous and never forgot a name. Her sharp wit and sense of humor were her defining characteristics.

She is survived by her only child, Maria Elena Jaramillo and Maria’s husband, Ryan Jaramillo, and their children, Daniel, Aiden, Tyler and Eva. She is also survived by her partner, Harold Maez; his sons, Mario and Carlos Maez; and his grandson, Mario Polo Maez.

Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, Aug. 30, at Riverside Funeral Home in Los Lunas.

Reina Maria Martinez Trujillo


Reina Maria Martinez Trujillo

Reina Maria Martinez Trujillo passed away on Monday, Aug. 26, 2019.

Services are pending. Please contact Romero Funeral Home 864-8501 for further information.

Please sign Reina’s online tribute at romerofuneralhomenm.com. Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

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