Celestino Garcia Obituary
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In Memory of

Celestino William Garcia

April 6, 1929 - February 11, 2014
Obituary

Bill Garcia, age 84, of Widefield, passed away at home February 11, 2014. He was born April 6, 1929 in La Junta, CO but grew up in Rocky Ford, CO prior to his military service which became his life-long passion. He is survived by his son, Gregory; his daughter, Rhonda Lewis; his grandson, Joshua (Colleen) Lewis; his great-grandson, Francisco, and his brother-in-law, Werner Gierth. He was preceded in death by his devoted wife of 54 years, Helga. Bill joined the Army Air Corps at age 17 but when it was discovered he was not yet 18 years old he was sent home where he stayed working with his dad as a sheepherder and as a pressman for...
Bill Garcia, age 84, of Widefield, passed away at home February 11, 2014.
He was born April 6, 1929 in La Junta, CO but grew up in Rocky Ford, CO prior to his military service which became his life-long passion.

He is survived by his son, Gregory; his daughter, Rhonda Lewis; his grandson, Joshua (Colleen) Lewis; his great-grandson, Francisco, and his brother-in-law, Werner Gierth. He was preceded in death by his devoted wife of 54 years, Helga.

Bill joined the Army Air Corps at age 17 but when it was discovered he was not yet 18 years old he was sent home where he stayed working with his dad as a sheepherder and as a pressman for Unique Cleaners in Rocky Ford. As soon as he turned 18 he joined the U. S Army, where he remained until his retirement in October 1968. He rose quickly through the enlisted ranks and became one of the youngest Command Sergeant Majors (CSM).

Throughout his retirement he was very active in the VFW, American Legion and especially the Special Forces Association. For many years, up to and including 2013, he attended the Special Forces Convention in Las Vegas, NV. Up until three years ago he would meet his comrade in arms Don Benjamin in Cheyenne, WY and drive in Don's motor home to Las Vegas. After that he agreed reluctantly to take a flight to Las Vegas.

Among the many highlights of his career was sewing with the 11th and 101St Airborne as a paratrooper. He was stationed for many years at Fort Campbell, KY. He also proudly served the U. S. Army in assignments to Japan, Korea, Germany and Vietnam, where he had four different assignments. He was later assigned to Fort Carson, where he proudly served as CSM for the Aviation Battalion until his retirement in October 1968.

It was in Germany that he married his wife Helga in January, 1957. Bill was very proud that in whatever country he was assigned he learned to speak their language. He was fluent in Japanese, Korean and German, in addition to Spanish and English.

Bill was a member of a large close family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Donaciano and Lucy Garcia; his sisters, Ann, Viola, and Mary; his brother, Donald Ernest; his stepfather, Juan Zamora, and his stepbrothers, Joe and John Zamora. He is also survived by his sisters, Sylvia (Tony) Aragon and Bertha Garcia; his brother, Charles (Delia) Garcia, his stepsister, Mary Lou Zamora and his stepbrother, Isaac Zamora. Bill was very close to and was loved very much by all his nephews and nieces. They include Bob (Judy), Jimmy (Maria), Ben, Donny, Billy Vigil, Marilyn (Fernando) Sanchez, Pauline (Joe) Gil, Patty Arendt, Michael (Birdy), and Andy Bennett; Anthony (Linda) Garcia, Jonathan Marshall Garcia; Carla, Carlos (Theresa), and Christoper Garcia; his grandnephews, Nick Gonzales and Erik Garcia; his grandnieces Nyssa Garcia, Adriana Gonzales, Aurelia and Mia Garcia, and step nephews and nieces Becky Pacheco, Marisa (Jose) Gomez, Denise (Tony) Hernandez, and Vincent Zamora. He was also preceded in death by a niece, Nancy Juarez and nephew Larry Arendt.

Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, February 20, at Dove-Witt Family Mortuary, 6630 S. Highway 85/87, Fountain. Bill's remains will be cremated. After completion of the new National Cemetery in Colorado Springs, Bill and Helga will be laid to rest.

"Uncle Bill. God bless you. You will always be in our thoughts and prayers we will miss you a lot. God bless.love you." Patricia Ahrendt (Tucson, Arizona)

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