At 0015 hours on February 8th Jose “Joe” Ramon Candelaria completed his life’s work and made the beautiful journey to Heaven and was joyfully received into the loving arms our Heavenly Father. He was joyously reunited with his parents Pedro and Juana Candelaria, brothers Rally and Roberto Candelaria, and daughter Rebecca “Becky” Candelaria Reza. There is no doubt they were all there to celebrate his arrival.
Joe was born to Pedro and Juana Candelaria on September 27, 1931 in El Paso, Texas. He is survived by his sisters Rufina Trejo and Jessie Villa, sons Joe, Enrique, Hector, Eduardo, and Gerardo, daughter Sylvia Candelaria, 10 Grandchildren, 4 Great Grandchildren and numerous nephews and nieces. Joe was preceded in death by his parents, two brothers, and his daughter.
Joe and his wife of 31 years Dora Patino lived their lives in Socorro, Texas where they each raised their children. He epitomized a great father and an even greater grandfather and great grandfather. Grandsons DJ and Andrew know their fishing trips with Grandpa Joe are memories that will live in their hearts forever. When it came to making treasured memories, Grandpa Joe was the best.
He was a devoted husband to Dora who made him extremely happy, a great Dad and the most loyal friend one could ever have. At times he was short on money but he was always rich with countless family and friends. Most Sundays in the spring, you would find Joe and Dora sitting together talking, laughing and listening to the radio on the front porch of their humble and treasured home. Visitors were always greeted with his kind, big genuine smile, an enthusiastic wave with both hands in the air, and a great big hug. He had such a welcoming heart and you could never arrive or leave their home without receiving one of his gentle handshakes and big bear hugs.
Dad was one of the very rare “Jack of all trades and the master of most!” He was skilled in plumbing, electrical work, roofing, auto mechanics, landscaping, veterinary medicine, and a master of the outdoor grill. He could even give Emeril a run for his money in the kitchen and his carpentry skills made St. Joseph proud. Joe was a man that would give the shirt off his back and ask for nothing in return.
Joe proudly answered our Nation’s call during the Korean War. He enlisted in the United States Army on June 13, 1951 and trained in anti-aircraft weaponry at Fort Bliss, Texas. He shipped out to Korea, was assigned to D Battery, 50th Anti-Aircraft Artillery Battalion (AW)(SP) and fought in six campaigns manning both the Twin 30 and Quad 40 Anti-Aircraft weapons. Having endured a grueling 18-month combat tour, Corporal Joe Candelaria was Honorably Discharged from Active Duty on June 5, 1953 and returned home to resume his life in his beloved hometown of Socorro, Texas. Throughout his entire life, his patriotism never faltered and he proudly flew the America flag in their front yard every day of the year.
One of his proudest moments and greatest honors was when he and Dora attended a Veterans Day celebration. Of the almost 100 war veterans in attendance, Dad was recognized as the only Veteran there who fought in the Korean War. Every veteran in attendance took the time to shake his hand and thank him for his service to our Nation. He had the tough exterior of a war-hardened true American Soldier but also a heart of gold and was a fine example for future Soldiers. He was firm believer that if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.
Joe had three loves of his life: his beloved wife Dora and his two precious daughters Becky and Sylvia. Joe and Dora would have celebrated their 31st Anniversary this Valentine’s Day. There could not be a more appropriate day for an anniversary than theirs, Valentine’s Day. They belonged to Saints Peter & Paul Catholic Parish in Socorro, Texas where they regularly attended Mass on Sundays and Holy Days of Obligation. Family, friends, and parishioners will miss Joe tremendously. He will never be forgotten and still lives on in each of our hearts.
Our heartfelt thanks go out to Providence East Hospital’s Emergency Room and West Wing COVID Telemetry Unit. Our special thanks to Valerie in the ER and Nurses Desire and Rachel in the Telemetry Unit. Our very special thanks to Dondrae for facilitating Facetime calls for Dora to speak to Joe and for Nurse Practitioner Gomez for his frequent updates on Joe to DJ. Our loving and eternal gratitude and profound respect go out to Father Jorge, Roman Catholic Priest and to Nurse Alma in the West Wing COVID Telemetry Unit. Father Jorge selflessly administered the Holy Sacrament of Last Rites to Joe. Alma not only established the Zoom video conference that enabled us to watch Father Jorge administer Last Rites and allowed us to see and speak to Joe as we said our goodbyes, but she also lovingly held Joe’s hand on our behalf and comforted him throughout his last hours until the very end.
Visitation will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, February 11, 2021 at the Sunset Funeral Home in El Paso, Texas with the Rosary to be recited at 11:00 a.m. that morning. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, there will be no Funeral Mass. Interment will follow at Mount Carmel Catholic Cemetery. Pallbearers for Joe will be Miss Sylvia Candelaria and her husband Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Parker, Mr. DJ Reza, Miss Patsy Patino and her husband Mr. Arturo “Tury” Terrazas, Mr. RJ Marquez, and Mr. Andrew Candelaria.
Due to the COVID-19 Pandemic we will be strictly following all CDC guidelines, State and Local Government mandates, and Mount Carmel Catholic Cemetery policy and we implore each guest to do the same. The limited number of 50 family and friends attending the visitation at Sunset Funeral Home must adhere to the strict social distancing and wearing of masks inside the funeral home. For the six pallbearers and four additional family members allowed at the graveside service and military honors, the same strict social distancing and wearing of masks standards will be maintained. Due to Mount Carmel Catholic Cemetery’s COVID-19 policy, other family members and friends wishing to follow in the procession from Sunset Funeral Home to Mount Carmel Catholic Cemetery, must remain in their vehicles on the roads of the cemetery. For the safety and security of the Priest, 10 family members, and the military honor detail, anyone not wishing to abide by the policy will be asked to leave the cemetery for the duration of the graveside service and military honors.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be given to DJ who will present them to Dora after the funeral.
***Livestream will begin at 9:00 AM through our facebook page***
To send flowers to the family in memory of Jose Ramon Candelaria, please visit our flower store