Mary Louise Chavez Gomez, of San Antonio, TX., and a Canary Island
descendent, passed peacefully into her heavenly home on June 30,
2023, at the age of 93 in the comfort of her home, with her husband
Rudy, her children, and family by her side.
Born on January 29, 1930, in San Antonio, she graduated from San
Antonio Vocational and Technical High School (Fox Tech) in 1947
where she received many academic accolades and honors. She was
Valedictorian of her senior class and highly active in several clubs
including the commercial Distributive Education Clubs of America
(DECA), Secretariettes Club, Student Council, and National Honor
Society, as well as being the Advisory Secretary and Treasurer,
Technical Representative, and Sophomore, Junior and Senior
Representative. Additionally, she received 60, 80 and 100 Shorthand
Certificates and a Penmanship Certificate.
With all of Mary Louise’s stellar academic accomplishments and
active hands-on training and guidance in the two-year DECA training
program in her Junior and Senior year, she worked one-half day and
attended school the other half. In DECA, emphasis is placed on
learning a business from the ground up. At the completion of this
exceptional training program and upon graduation, she was recruited
and hired in a key support staff position at Brook Army Medical
Center under the command of Major General John M. Willis, the
eighth commandant of the Army Medical Field Service School and the
first Commander of BAMC.
She often talked about her duties as one of the Assistants to the Chief
Nurse at Fort Sam Houston Brook Army Medical Center where she
proudly served the entire nursing staff handling various day-to-day
administrative support activities including all work assignments,
leave schedules, and medical stenography.
She met the love of her life, Rudy, at a fruit stand at Five Points where
Rudy was working part-time as a very young man after grade school.
Dad recalls seeing Mom riding in the back seat of a model A Ford with
her head barely visible, but he was quick to refer to this cute, shy girl
as “Shorty” and “Cat-Eyes” because she was so short and had
beautiful green eyes. This cat-and-mouse game went on for several
years before they even spoke with each other. They finally connected
in high school with Mom as a sophomore and Dad a senior. Their
journey as a married couple would not begin for several more years
until after Dad graduated from high school, joined the Navy, and was
discharged after the end of WWII. Dad then began courting her
seriously for a few years before asking for her hand in marriage. They
were married at Little Flower Catholic Church (now the Basilica) in
1948. Together, they raised five children and sacrificed to provide
each of them with a Catholic School education and college degrees.
They would have celebrated their 75th wedding anniversary later this
year. Although Mom and Dad were not much into parties or big social
gatherings, their children honored them with two beautiful and
memorable wedding anniversary celebratory events. Their 50th
anniversary celebration took place at the Alamodome for close family
and friends and their 60th at the Crystal Room at the historic San
Francisco Steak house. The family will forever cherish the videos of
these two special events.
Mary Louise was an excellent homemaker, cook, cheerleader, and
prayer warrior for all, including her husband, children, grandchildren,
great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren, for whom she
cared and loved in her home. She enjoyed 40’s big band music,
mariachi music, and especially being serenated by her talented
daughter Celeste who continues singing at weddings, funerals, and
social gatherings. She enjoyed having family over for special events,
especially Christmas Eve, where she and the family celebrated
without fail nearly every year, except for the Covid years. She and her
husband have been active parishioners of St. Ann’s Catholic Church
since 1953 and volunteered in many school and church activities.
She was especially proud of their role as Eucharistic Ministers and
spoke of her duties as recently as a week before her passing. Mary
Louise also enjoyed sewing and working on crafts. She and her
youngest daughter, Becky, worked together and attended many arts
and craft shows displaying and selling their hand-made crafts, all of
which were made with love and attention to detail.
Mary Louise is preceded in death by her son, Stephen E. Gomez;
daughter-in-law, Barbara Gomez; brother, Paul R. Chavez Jr.; father,
Paul R. Chavez Sr.; and mother, Antonia Cortinas Chavez.
She is survived by her husband, Rudy Gomez, Sr.; son, Rudy Gomez,
Jr; son, Thomas P. Gomez and wife, Arlene; daughter, Celeste M. Ponce
and husband, Javier; and daughter, Rebecca L. Gomez and life partner,
Michael Juarez. She is also survived by 6 grandchildren, 6 great-
grandchildren, 2 great-great grandchildren and 4 nieces and 1
A celebration of life and Mass will be held Saturday July 15, 2023, at
11 am at St. Ann’s Catholic Church, 210 St. Ann St., San Antonio,
Texas 78201. A private burial with military honor guard is planned at
a future date at Ft. Sam Houston National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Rudy and Barbara
Gomez Nursing Technology Endowment, 7703 Floyd Curl Dr., San
Antonio, Tx. 78229. https://makelivesbetter.uthscsa.edu/gomez
This perpetual Endowment will support Nursing Education
Technology and programs such as Training for Caregivers in the
“Caring for the Caregiver” program at UT Health SA School of
The family is grateful to the Caregiving Team of Embrace Hospice
nurses, aids, social workers, chaplain and support staff for their
sustained level of care and support for Mary Louise throughout the
last several years.