Maria Eugenia Alvarez Sr. (Maru), 75, passed away August 15, 2013. Maru was born on March 5, 1938 in Torreon, Coahuila, Mexico. She attended finishing school in Torreon, and developed a passion for baking and cake decorating in addition to her training as a secretarial assistant and bookkeeper. She was at the top of her class and was highly sought after by numerous potential employers, including the Central Bank of Mexico. She met her husband of 54 years, Alejandro Alvarez, while working as the executive assistant for his father, Don Juan Alvarez Vidal. After marrying in Torreon and the birth of their first child, Maria, they moved to El Paso, Texas, where their remaining children, Cristina, Dora, Noemi, Carolina, and Alex were born. She became a U.S. citizen in a joint naturalization ceremony with her daughter, Maria. Over the years, Maru developed many beautiful and deep friendships and became a known figure in the greater El Paso Community because of a sculptured cake business that she started in the autumn of her life. Word of mouth spread about her delicious and spectacularly beautiful pastry work and she was highly sought out by many near and far. Her professionalism and perfectionism as a baker and business person were admired by many. One of her greatest pleasures is that all over El Paso and Texas and New Mexico and Mexico, her work is documented in the photos and videos of the special events of her many friends and clients lives. She spent the last year with her oldest daughter in San Francisco, where she played a vital role in organizing the archives of New America Media's accounting office. Maru was a wonderful and devoted mother, grandmother, and wife, and will be deeply missed, but greatly celebrated for the mark that she left on everyone who knew her. Her faith in God and Jesus Christ was unshakeable. Any definition of unconditional love, kindness, and generosity should include a reference to Maru. We are blessed that our lives were on the same camino as hers, even if it was for too brief a period. She is survived by her husband, Alejandro Alvarez; her children Maria Alvarez, Cristina Carpenter, Dora Gonzalez, Noemi Alvarez, Carolina Sepulveda, and Alex Alvarez Jr.; her grandchildren Melissa Gonzalez, Amanda Gonzalez, Erica Alvarez, Jessica Johnson, Paul Anthony Alvarez, Lisa Rodriguez, Alex (Ali) Alvarez Jr., Brenda Gonzalez, Kyle Carpenter, Nikki Alvarez; her great-grandchildren Julian Alvarez, Paulina Zoe Alvarez, Jade Diaz, Sophie Gokhale, and Grady Johnson; her siblings Letitia Castaneda, Lilia Ramirez, Jose Carrillo Jr; her in-laws Dante Gonzalez, Ray Sepulveda, Josh Rodriguez, Sonny Gokhale, Isaac Johnson, and Ed Nuñez; and her many friends.
Maru's family is especially appreciative of the dedicated hospice care by Armida and Leti at the Amanecer Foster Home during her final days – her final moments were dignified because of their loving care. Visitation will be held on Wednesday, August 21, 2013 from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. at Martin Funeral Home West, with a Rosary at 7:00 p.m. A Funeral Mass will be held on Thursday, August 22, 2013 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Matthews Catholic Church, 400 W. Sunset Road, El Paso, Texas 79912. A Graveside Service will follow at Memory Gardens of the Valley, 4900 McNutt Road, Santa Teresa, New Mexico 88008. An open house celebration of Maru's life with photos, videos, and testimonials will follow also on Thursday, August 22 beginning at approximately 1:15 p.m. at the nursery at 150 Sunset Road, El Paso, Texas. Services entrusted to Martin Funeral Home West, 128 N. Resler Dr., El Paso, Texas 79912 www.martinfuneralhomewest.com