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Obituaries

Obituary notices.

Jimmy Maddox rsJimmy Arvil Maddox (Big Jim), 81, passed away in the early morning hours of Thursday, May 18, 2017, at Gila Regional Medical Center. His wife of 54 years, Lucinda, was at his side.

He was born on October 9, 1935, to James W. Maddox and Earlene Wilson Maddox in Port, Oklahoma.

After graduation from High School, he moved to NM and lived with his maternal Grandmother Mary Myrtle Mathews while he attended NM Western College in Silver City. He spent the remainder of his life living and working there.

During his lifetime he held many jobs. He entered each one with enthusiasm and skill. He always researched every field that he worked in and became proficient in whatever he was working at. He enjoyed the outdoors, camping, and hunting, which he passed on to countless youth as a Boy Scout leader. He worked with several welding supply companies; sold insurance; and was an excellent cook, making and selling bread, dinner rolls, and cinnamon rolls for many years. He was especially known for his sourdough bread, which always sold out quickly. He loved riding his Harley and logged many miles and friends along with it. For many years he was Santa Clause to many children of Grant County.

He was a member of the Loyal Order of Moose, Silver City Lodge #1718 where he held several different offices and held the Legionnaire and Friendship degrees. He was also a longtime member of The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Silver City Lodge #413.

He is survived by his wife of 54 years and the love of his life, Lucinda, his son Thomas and his wife Julie; grandsons Kyle Maddox, his fiancé Latisha Herrera, and Sean Maddox; one great-grandson Logan Kaide Maddox; his sister-in-law Mary Maddox, and nieces Beverly Frederick, her husband Dale, and Cynthia Maddox.

He was preceded in death by his maternal grandmother, Mary Myrtle Mathews, parents, James and Earlene, his step-mother LaVonne, one brother, Jerry Lee Maddox, and a son, Duncan Wayne Wayne Menhkoff.

He was loved by many and will be sorely missed.

Winnie Louise Holdridge, 87, of Deming, NM passed away Sunday May 21, 2017, at her home.

A full obituary will follow.

Bob Jensen rsRobert Wayne Jensen, 85, known by his family and friends as "Bob" of Silver City passed away on Saturday, May 20, 2017 at his residence surrounded by his loving family.

Bob was born on October 29, 1931 to Bert and Erma Jensen in Albuquerque, NM.

He retired from the US Forest Service as an engineer. Bob loved being with his family and was always there for them in time of need. He also enjoyed the horse races, casinos, riding his four wheeler and old western movies. Bob was watching a western movie and as the credits were mentioned, he passed away. Bob was loving, outgoing, and telling his forest service stories. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him.

Bob is survived a daughter, Cindy Delph (John); son-in-law Danny; grandchildren, Marvin Romero (Charmayne), Michelle Wicketts (Johnny), Bobby Fisher (Tiff), Mary Ellen Henderson (Forrest), Shawn Fisher and Lindy Pickinpaugh (Chris); great-grandchildren, Chantel Loera (Rene), DJ Bleich (Kaylee), Dylan Wicketts, Dakota Wicketts, Trinity Rose Fisher, Charlotte Pickinpaugh, Josh Ivy, Liam, Joshua, Lennon and Brooklyn Fisher; great-great grandchildren, Catalya Loera and Kaylie Bleich; many nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Bert and Erma Jensen; wife, Emily Alice Jensen; a son, David Jensen; daughter, Kathie Fisher.

Cremation has been entrusted to Baca's Funeral Chapels. A Celebration of Life will take place on Saturday, May 27, 2017 at Fairview Memorial Park in Albuquerque, NM.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Bob's favorite charity, St. Jude Children's Hospital.

Billy Massey rsBilly Fred Massey was born March 18, 1928 in Kaufman, Texas, the middle son of O'Dell and Beatrice Massey. His time on earth ended May 17, 2017.

Older family members called him Billy Fred, more people knew him as Bill, but when the first grandchild, Tammy, came along she dubbed him Daddy Bill and the name stuck.

Shortly after Billy Fred was born the family moved to Houston where his dad worked for the Hughes Tool Company before moving to Fabens, Texas in around 1931. Bill, as most knew him, grew up on the Lee Moor farms and graduated from Fabens High School. After graduation he moved to present-day Green Valley Arizona helping his dad and brother run a thousand-acre farm. He married Carleen Lyerly of Tucson, in 1946. They raised two sons, Randy Lee and Ricky Alan.

Bill's lifelong passion was farming, starting as a water boy, carrying buckets of water to the men in the fields for fifty cents a day. When he was big enough to reach the pedals he began driving a tractor.

In 1952 when the Animas Valley was beginning to be opened up to farming, Billy Fred and his brother William Moore both bought farms here. A year later their father followed them to Animas. They successfully scratched out a living growing cotton and raising a family through the 1950's and 60's. When Randy and Ricky graduated from college Massey Enterprises was formed.

Bill was always open to change. Over the years the farm produced cotton, milo, corn, chile, jalapenos, pinto beans, wheat, barley, oat hay and alfalfa. With each new crop Bill and the boys worked hard to make the best possible yield. There were very few pieces of farm equipment that were not modified in some way by Bill and his boys. He was forever tinkering. Together, Bill and the boys helped revolutionize growing cotton on 30 inch rows, adapting a cotton stripper to the new spacing. A few years later Case International and John Deere introduced machines for the "New" row spacings. In July of 1985, Bill was featured on the cover of the Cotton Farming magazine.

When Massey Enterprises began growing chile, it wasn't long before Bill once again became obsessed with finding a better way. First it was by growing chile under sprinkler irrigation, which everyone said could not be done. Then by narrowing the rows it was grown on, and finally inventing a chile picker to harvest the crop. By now he had the grandsons involved as they all worked together and invented and built the "Massey Pepper Harvester" in their shop. When they were done, their machine would harvest three truck loads of Jalapenos in 6 ½ hours. This would take 200 men to do the same, and according to Border Foods, the chile was cleaner than hand picked.

Bill loved farming. He loved his family. He loved John Wayne and he loved Mickey Mouse. He passed these passions on to the generations to follow. Bill always said his goal was to have a thousand-acre farm and own a pickup. Well, he succeeded in accomplishing that and much more, farming with his family and attaining great success in such a tough industry. The legacies that Daddy Bill has passed on to his sons, his grandchildren and his great-grandchildren are a tremendous love of the land, a great work ethic, a deep pride in one's accomplishments and unconditional love of family.

He is survived by his two sons, Randy Lee Massey, his wife Vicki, and Ricky Alan Massey and his wife Bobbie, all of Animas; Two brothers, William Massey of Animas and Milton Massey and his wife Carolyn of El Paso, Texas; five grandchildren, Tammy Pompeo and her husband Mike of Animas, Tisha Loranc of Las Cruces, Alysha Wagley and her husband Sam of Animas, Scott Massey and his wife Carrie of Animas, and Cash Massey and his wife Kanzas also of Animas; and 12 great-grandchildren... Dallas and Troy Pompeo, Jaxon, Kaylee and Jaci Loranc, Rayce, Ty and Coy Wagley, Jade and Cap Massey and Lindsey and Piper Massey.

He was preceded in death by his parents O'Dell and Beatrice Massey and his daughter-in-law Sheila Massey.

Graveside services will be held at the Middle Animas Cemetery on Saturday, May 27, 2017 at 10:30 AM.

Lucille Lowe, 81, a resident of Deming, NM entered eternal rest on Monday, May 22, 2017 at Mountain View Hospital in Las Cruces, NM.

Arrangements are pending with Terrazas Funeral Chapels ~ 575-546-0070.

Ernesto Venegas rsWe lost one of the "greatest generation" yesterday as Ernesto "Ernie" Venegas went to be with the Lord. He passed away, peacefully at Gila Regional Medical Center in Silver City, New Mexico surrounded by his family.

As a young man, Ernest was working at Kennecott's copper mine when World War 2 erupted. He joined the Army in November 1942 and served in Europe and participated in the D-Day invasion of France. He fought with his unit in Northern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe. Among his many military decorations is a distinguished unit citation for the 434th Troop Carrier Group for completing 132 motorized and 132 glider flights with infantrymen and essential supplies accurately delivered to pinpoint objectives in Normandy on June 5 - 7, 1944.

Ernest returned to Grant County to the mine and married Socorro Corral on September 8, 1946, his wife of 70 years. Together they bought the Hurley Bar and built it up to one of the most popular bars in Grant County.

Ernest worked at Kennecott for 45 years and retired 30 years ago, allowing him plenty of time to spend with his family. He loved fishing, hunting, cooking and spending time with his grandchildren. He will be greatly missed by many and never be forgotten.

Ernest is survived by his wife Socorro "Sookie", three children Dolores and her husband Bruce Sandler, Ernest and his wife Pricilla, and Randy and his wife Leticia, 7 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be Tuesday, May 23 from 10:30 - 11:30 a.m. at Infant Jesus Shrine in Hurley, NM with the holy rosary to begin at 11:30 a.m. with Father Francisco reciting. The funeral mass will follow at 12 noon with Father Francisco to officiate.

Pallbearers will be Randy Venegas Jr., Yajaira Venegas, Anahi Venegas, EJ, Celeste, and Vanessa Venegas.

Inurnment will be Wednesday, May 24 at 2 p.m. at Fort Bayard National Cemetery with full military honors. Cremation will take place at Terrazas Crematory.

Arrangements are with Terrazas Funeral Chapels and Crematory "Trusted care for the ones you love" ~ 575-537-0777.

To send condolences, visit www.terrazasfuneralchapel.com.

Billy F Massey, 89, Animas resident passed away Wednesday morning May 17, 2017, at his home.

A grave side service will take place Saturday May 27 at 10:30 in the morning at Middle Animas Cemetery.

A full obituary will follow.

Vilge Vanke rsVilge C. Vanke, 102, longtime Deming resident passed away Wednesday May 17, 2017 at Mimbres Memorial Nursing Home.

Vilge was born October 8, 1914 in Buffalo, New York to Teresa and Silvio Paci.

She moved to Deming in 1975 coming from Akron, Ohio and was a member of the Rockhound Association and was a communicant of the Catholic Church.

She was very talented, was a great seamstress, making coats and shoes, and also loved to knit and cook One of her loves was following her son Arlen, in his competitions and winnings in Stock, Super Stock and Pro Stock classes in car racing.

She is survived by son, Arlen Vanke and wife Joyce of Deming; grandchild, Craig Vanke and 2 great-grandchildren, Alyssa and Taylor Vanke.

Vilge was preceded in death by parents, Silvio and Teresa Paci; husband, Louie Vanke; 2 brothers and 2 sisters.

No service will take place as were her wishes. Cremation was entrusted to Baca's Mimbres Crematory.

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