Rodolfo Martinez Navarro, a beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and brother, passed away peacefully from natural causes on June 27, 2023, in Forsyth, Georgia. Born on August 7, 1930, in Mission, Texas, he lived a life full of community service, creativity, and thoughtfulness.
Rodolfo was a proud graduate of Mission High School, Class of 1949. His dedication to his country was evident as he served in the United States Air Force during the Korean War. Following his military service, he continued his commitment to his country by joining the Civil Service. He retired as a radar technician from Williams Air Force Base, demonstrating his intelligence and dedication in all his endeavors.
Rodolfo was a man of faith and community. After moving back to Texas after retiring, he became an active member of St. Paul’s Catholic Church. His commitment to helping others was evident in his time spent teaching citizenship classes in Chandler, Arizona, to assist people in obtaining United States citizenship. He was a member of Saint Mary’s Catholic Church in which he was involved in many of the church fundraisers and organizations including the Knight of Columbus and the Boy Scouts. Rodolfo was a Pack Master in the Cub Scouts for many years, instilling values of leadership and responsibility in the youth he mentored.
His creativity shone through in his love for art. He was an accomplished artist, finding joy in drawing and painting. His artwork was not only a reflection of his creative spirit but also his thoughtful nature, he passed that passion and talent to several of his children and grandchildren.
Rodolfo is survived by his loving wife of 67 years, Tommie Pena Navarro of Forsyth, formerly of Mission, Texas and Chandler, Arizona. He leaves behind a legacy in his sons, David L. Navarro (Helen) of Forsyth, Daniel E. Navarro of Woodstock, Georgia, and Hector R. Navarro (Heidi) of Anchorage, Alaska. His memory will continue to be cherished by his grandchildren, Patrick William Navarro (Caitlin) of Tewksbury, New Jersey, David Michael Navarro (Shannon) of Beaufort, South Carolina, Kaitlyn Ann Navarro of Chicago, Illinois, Taisha Nicole Koster (Cory) of Rhinelander, Wisconsin, Shayna Marie Navarro of Cornelius, North Carolina, Christopher Martin Ross (Mykayla) of Portland, Oregon, and Secoro Elizabeth Miller (Brandon Anderson) of Anchorage. He was also a proud great-grandfather to Savannah Gibbins, Luca Navarro, Mateo Navarro, Dash Navarro, Kit Navarro, Zeppelin Koster, and Finnley Koster.
Rodolfo is also survived by his sisters, Socorro Cavazos of Gilbert, Arizona, Bertha Gonzales of San Antonio, Texas, Hortencia Garza (Oscar) of San Antonio, Texas, Olga Garza-Navarro of Mission, Texas, and Veila Acosta of McAllen, Texas. He is preceded in death by his parents, sisters, Guadalupe N. Echazarreta, Rebecca Leal and brother, Gabriel Navarro, Jr.
Rodolfo Navarro’s life was characterized by his intelligence, thoughtfulness, and creativity. His dedication to his family, country, and community was unwavering. His memory will live on in the many lives he touched, the lessons he taught, and the love he shared.
A Funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, December 13, 2023, at St. Paul Catholic Church in Mission at 10 a.m. Burial will be at the Rio Grande Valley State Veterans Cemetery located at 2520 Inspiration Road in Mission at 1 p.m.