Obituaries (8/15/2013)


HOUSTON – Darrell Lloyd Houston, 43, passed away Friday, July 19, 2013, in Phoenix. Darrell was born in Alamogordo on Aug. 6, 1970. He is survived by his parents Vernon and Betty Houston; sister Debra Berkey and her husband, DeGraff; and two well loved nephews Houston and John Berkey. He attended the Socorro Baptist Temple, attended Socorro High School and graduated from New Port Pacific High School. After graduating, he worked many years as a caregiver to the disabled until his health forced him to retire.  He made his home in Phoenix. He was a very kind person and always had a smile.  He will be dearly missed. A memorial service will be held at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2013, at 11 a.m. A private family interment will be held later at Socorro Cemetery. He will be buried next to his sister Deanna.

TAFOYA – William Chance Tafoya, 22 years old,  passed away Sunday, Aug. 4, 2013. Chance pursued life with passion. There was no “try,” there was only “do.” He loved the mountains and hunting with his dad, Carl Tafoya. He designed and welded chopper bikes, won science fair trophies, rode BMX, created amazing stencil art, and competed in grappling, MMA and kickboxing tournaments. Chance and his mom, Kim Berlat, shared the same goofy sense of humor, laughing at the most ridiculous things and pulling those around them into their laughter. Chance and his brother Sam Tafoya trained and sparred together. It was a piece of their lives that was exclusive to the two of them. Chance’s love for Samantha Schnell made him whole. Chance leaves behind a family who adored him and friends who couldn’t get enough of him. Chance’s journey is far from over. He travels with wings on his back and the sky at his feet surrounded by laughter and peace. We hold him in our hearts, and when we speak his name, he stops for a moment, looks down at us and smiles. Donations can be made to the Chance Tafoya Scholarship Fund at Rosales Karate and Kickboxing, P.O. Box 1328, Los Lunas, NM 87031.

GARCIA – Jose Trinidad Garcia, 40, passed away Wednesday, July 10, 2013, in Centerline, Mich., surrounded by family and friends from complications of diabetes. Some knew him as “Jose,” others by “Joe” and “Joseph.” Although in life Joseph faced many difficulties, he remained fun loving, laughed often and had a heart of gold. He loved working as a repo agent as well as being a talented tattoo artist.  Although he was born in Socorro and spent a lot of time here growing up, he called Detroit home. Joe was born June 8, 1973, to Adela “Della” and Jose Trinidad “Trini” Garcia in Socorro. He is survived by his mother, Adela Cheney, of Kansas City, Kan.; fiancee, Joslyn Reinig, of Center Line, Mich.; brother Josh Mueller, of Socorro; and two daughters, Rheyna Garcia and Brittney Duff Logan, and son Justin Duff, all of Warren, Mich. He is also survived by three grandchildren, M.J. and Mason Logan, and Hayden Duff, also of Warren; niece Kyndra Mueller, of T or C; and nephew Anthony Gutierrez, of Socorro, along with many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. Jose was preceded in death by his father, Trini, in 1987 and  his younger brother Raymond Gutierrez in 2007. Though Joseph will be greatly missed, we are comforted in knowing he also is in God’s care and has been joyfully reunited with his dad and brother. Joseph’s memorial service will be held Saturday, Aug. 17, 2013, at 10 a.m. at the Lemitar Cemetery. A celebration of life barbecue will follow at Escondida Lake. Please bring lawn chairs as well as happy memories to share.

DURKIN – Larry Stephen Durkin, 61, of Lemitar, passed away Sunday, Aug. 11, 2013, at his home surrounded by his loving family. Armed with ibuprofen and antacids, he had unknowingly been battling cancer for a least a couple of years. On June 12, 2013, with intolerable pain winning over a stubborn determination to wait it out, CT scans revealed end stage bone cancer. Unshaken, he informed the family that if it was God’s will, he could heal this as easily as a stubbed toe. If not, “I get to see the Lord, and either way I win!” Larry was born in Las Cruces on Sept. 14, 1951, to John E. and Alice (Bonar) Durkin. After growing up in Hatch, this farm boy spent two years in the Air Force before he was honorably discharged due to the loss of his father. Shortly after, in 1974, he met Laura and, following a “prolonged” eight-week courtship, they married. His illustrious three-month college career ended with the humble decision he was not going to learn what he needed to know. Larry went on to become a successful mechanic, pilot, flight instructor, farmer and ultimately the full owner, half the brains and most of the brawn of El Air Ag Services. Larry was a husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend, and he was loved in every single one of those roles. But more than these, he was a man who loved the Lord with all his heart and lived his life with the ever increasing desire to know Jesus more. He left a legacy of faith that will encourage, convict and inspire those who knew him for years to come. Holding down the fort in his absence and waiting to see him again are his wife, Laura; oldest daughter Annette and her husband, Danny, and their son Jared; “middle toot” Dawn and her husband, Blake, and their son Levi; son Brian and his wife, Mandy, and their daughter Payton and baby Durkin (still baking); brother Jack and his wife, Cherie, and their two sons Shane and Cale, and their families; and his sisters Bonnie and Karen and her husband, Blaine, and their children. Memorial services will be held in Kelly Hall at the Socorro County Fairgrounds, off state Highway 1, south of Socorro on Friday, Aug. 16, 2013, at 10 a.m. Light refreshments will follow. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to World Challenge at “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death, if by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.” (Philippians 3:10-11). To view information or leave a condolence, please visit Larry’s care has been entrusted to: Daniels Family Funeral Services, 309 Garfield St., Socorro, NM 87801, 575-835-1530 .

McGOWAN – Doris Madeline McGowan, 93, passed away peacefully Saturday, Aug. 10, 2013, surrounded by her loving family. She was born in Chicago on Nov. 30, 1919, to Archibald Cornelius and Mary Agnes (Haley) DeGraw. Doris has been a resident of Socorro for the past two years. She resided in Denver for most of her life. Doris was a devout Catholic and was a member of the Cathedral Basilica of Denver. She loved to read and collect books. She kept up with politics around the world. The New York Times newspaper was one of her fondest. Doris enjoyed playing bingo and had an avid interest in collecting antiques. She was a loving mother and grandmother. She was preceded in death by her parents; two husbands, Charles Clark in 1971 and Lowell McGowan in 1992; her beloved son James Clark; son-in-law Charles Walsh; four sisters and one brother. Doris is survived by her devoted children Cynthia Kessler and husband, Melvin, Sandra Walsh and George Clark and wife, Gail; and her son-in-law Joey Visco. Doris, or “Dee Dee” as she was affectionately known, will also be greatly missed by her grandchildren J.R. Kessler and wife, Suzanne; Michael Kessler and wife, Elizabeth; Sandra Martinez and husband, Peter; Lori Hildebrandt and husband, Richard; Mark Kessler and wife, Teresa; Jason Kessler and wife, Lisa-Marie; Michael Walsh and wife, Elizabeth; Jeffrey Walsh and wife, Jane; Lisa Clark; and Charles Clark and wife, Terry, as well as many great-grandchildren and other loving family members. A graveside inurnment will be held in Fort Logan National Cemetery, 4400 W Kenyon Ave., Denver, CO 80236 on Monday, Sept. 30, 2013, at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions or donations may be given in Doris’ honor to the Socorro Home Health Care and Hospice, 306 N. California St., P.O. Box 1009, Socorro, NM 87801. To view information or leave a condolence, please visit Doris’ care has been entrusted to: Daniels Family Funeral Services, 309 Garfield St., Socorro, NM 87801, 575-835-1530.