Manuel Horacio Gonzales, 88, was welcomed into the gates of Heaven on Wednesday, February 5, 2020.
Manuel was born to Pedro Gonzales and Casimira Baca in Las Colonias, NM. A small village just outside of Santa Rosa, NM. As the youngest of 8 children he would travel with his older brothers and work at whatever jobs were available. He could sit and tell endless hours of his adventures of various jobs and travel. He mostly spoke of family. Family was so important to him. The family then moved on to Las Vegas, NM where he completed the 10th grade and decided he had learned all he needed to set out and make his mark in the world, and that he did. He left a warm indelible mark in the heart of anyone he met. Then onto Albuquerque in the mid 40's where he met his sweetheart, Mary Sedillo also affectionately known to dad as Sam (still don't know the story behind that). They married on February 4, 1956. Dad passed 1 day after their 64th wedding anniversary holding his sweethearts hand at his home in the North Valley where he lived since 1960.
He worked at Southern Union Gas for 18 years. Determined to represent the working man and underdog, he took on the responsibility as the union shop steward, "amazing stories". He moved on to work for the wonderful Baca and Caire families at BC Bail Bonds. He later ventured out to start Bell Bonding. Gonzales Bail Bonds M&M Body, Southwest Landfill and many other enterprises. Many of which were successful and others, well not so much. But he never stopped dreaming and trying.
Dad was a visionary, an investor and a cheerleader. He always envisioned how he and those he knew could venture out in business. It was his joy to encourage and to give his insight to help others succeed. He was an investor because he invested in the lives of those he cared & prayed for. He was a cheerleader, dad was a man of humble beginnings and he never forgot where he came from. He cheered for and totally enjoyed the victory of an underdog. One Sunday dad was reading the Parade magazine, he came across an article about economic levels of prosperity. He yelled out to mom "Hey Sam, look at this, we don't make enough money to be poor". Well as we know due to God's blessing dad's work ethic and determination the tide changed for the kid from Las Colonias.
Manuel is preceded in death by his grandson Mauricio, his brothers Donaciano, Carmen, Jose, Isauro, Alberto and sisters Placidad and Carlota. All of whom he loved dearly and spoke of often.
Manuel is survived by his wife Mary Gonzales; six children, Manny Gonzales, Mary Ellen Gonzales, Terri Baird and husband, Scott, Vicki Lucero and husband, Juan, David Gonzales and wife, Becky, Loretta Glaser and husband David; 17 grandchildren and 34 great-grandchildren.
Manuel was a member of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church since 1960. He was a faithful Catholic, loved to pray with his children and grandchildren.
Dad was private in his generosity and always extended a hand to those in need.
Dad was a great father and amazing role model and a good buddy. I am thankful he walked with God.
Dad was a very virtuous man. He showed all of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren the importance of prayer. He spent hours interceding for everyone of us. Through his example he instilled in each and everyone of us the importance of getting on your knees and praying in times of joy and in times of sorrow. The virtue of intercession, because of his example is instilled in our family and will be for generations to come.
We will dearly miss his presence among us. However his legacy of love & honor will live on. Words cannot express our families' thankfulness to Dr. Standoli and Hospice of NM for their kindness and compassion.
Viewing is Thursday, February 13, 2020 from 6pm to 8pm at Reflections Funeral Home, 2400 Washington St NE. Final viewing is Friday, February 14, 2020 at 7:30am at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, 1860 Griegos Rd NW. Rosary to be recited at 8am with Mass at 9am. Burial to follow at Mount Calvary Cemetery.
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