Cover photo for Margarita "Rita" Chavez's Obituary
Margarita "Rita" Chavez Profile Photo

Margarita "Rita" Chavez

February 15, 1950 — December 4, 2023

Carlsbad

Margarita "Rita" Chavez

Margarita “Rita” Chavez, 73, of Grandi Road, Carlsbad, NM, passed away Monday, December 4, 2023 in Albuquerque, NM.

Visitation will be 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM, Monday, December 11, 2023 at Denton-Wood Funeral Home. Rosary will be recited at 9:30 AM, Tuesday, December 12, 2023 at San Jose Catholic Church followed by Mass of Christian Burial at 10:00 AM, with Fr. Juan Carlos Ramirez officiating. Interment will follow in Carlsbad Cemetery, Carlsbad, NM.  Denton-Wood Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements.

Rita was born February 15, 1950 in Carlsbad, NM to Alfredo and Manuela (Munoz) Franco. She graduated from Carlsbad High School in 1968 and continued her education at Eastern New Mexico University where she earned a bachelor’s and master’s in education.  Rita married David Chavez August 10, 1974.  She taught school in Loving and Carlsbad, retiring after 29 years of teaching. 

Rita embraced every role in her life with unmatched love and dedication. As a wife, she was the epitome of compassion and grace, and as a mother, she was the unwavering pillar of strength and love. Her children and her grandchildren were her world. She poured every ounce of her being into nurturing and guiding them, ensuring that she never missed a game, recital, or special occasion, leaving her legacy of love, laughter, and treasured memories.

Rita's impact extended beyond her family, as she was a dear friend, a respected teacher at the schools and in her church, and a source of kindness and warmth for all who knew her. Known affectionately as Mrs. Chavez, she left an indelible mark on the lives of her students, imparting knowledge, wisdom, compassion, and resilience.

Her words, "un dia a la vez," (one day at a time), were not just a phrase but a philosophy she embodied every day and is how we will all get through this together. Today we celebrate a life beautifully lived, a life that touched and enriched the hearts of her loved ones and all who were fortunate enough to experience her presence. 

Rita was preceded in death by her parents; daughter, Lorraine Chavez and granddaughter, Hannah Chavez. Survivors are her husband, David Chavez; children: Gabriel Chavez and wife, Cynthia, Monica Chavez, Jeremy Chavez and wife, Veronica, Angelica Chavez and Elizabeth Chavez and Daniel Calderon; 17 grandchildren; 1 great-grandson; sisters: Cesilia Medrano and husband, Rafael, Juanita Jojola and husband, Billy; brother, Alfredo Franco, and numerous nieces and nephews.

Pallbearers will be Anthony Chavez, Nicholas Brown, Jase Chavez, Jarren Villa, Arion Lopez and Zachary Ramirez.

In lieu of flowers, the family is asking that you make a memorial donation to the American Heart Association in the name of Margarita “Rita” Chavez.  Condolences may be expressed at dentonwood.com.

We would like to hold a meal for family and friends after the burial at the Knights of Columbus Hall (near St. Edward Catholic Church), 606 W. Shaw Street, Carlsbad, NM.  We welcome family and friends to join us and bring a dish/dessert to share.

Rest in peace, dear Mrs. Chavez. You will be deeply missed but never forgotten and will reside in our hearts forever.

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