Eleanor Rodriguez McCusker, 94, formerly of Kingsville, passed away surrounded by family and friends at home in Taos, NM, on July 23, 2020, of natural causes.
Eleanor was born in San Antonio, on December 17, 1925, to Ambrosio S. Rodriquez and Celia Valdez.She graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in San Antonio, in 1943.
Eleanor was a career civilian employee of the U. S. Navy for 33 years, 31 of which were spent at Naval Air Station Kingsville, a tactical training base.Among the various jobs she held was as the base’s Purchasing Officer.She retired as a Management Analyst in 1990.
Eleanor moved to Kingsville in the early 1950s and thrived on the life she built there.She was an active member of St.
Gertrude Parish including her involvement in the Altar and Rosary Society.She belonged to the FLAIR Department of the Woman’s Club of Kingsville and participated in style shows, fundraisers and luncheons with great enthusiasm.For many years she volunteered at the St. Thomas Aquinas Newman Center at Texas A&M University Kingsville helping serve free lunches on Thursdays to students of all faiths.She walked in the local Palmer Drug Abuse Program (PDAP) Annual Drug- Free Walk and, as a proud cancer survivor, in the American Cancer Society Relay for Life. She made regular donations to the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, where she had been treated.She was a lifelong Democrat who valued her right to vote and never missed an election.
Eleanor’s social circle was wide and diverse.She loved to dance and was always the last person to leave the party. She loved her friends, near and far, dearly. She spoke English and Spanish fluently and spent much time, especially in her later years, talking to people from across the country on her cell phone.She never remembered how to check her voicemail, so it was not unusual to get a call from her asking, “Did you call me?” One of her granddaughters recalls the times she called her Nana only to be told Nana had to go because “I have other people I have to talk to!”
Eleanor is survived by her daughters Maria Teresa Garcia (Kurt Winchester) and Carla Garcia Connolly (Jim Connolly); grandchildren Marisa Stofan (Tim Stofan), Alexandra Collignon (Oliver Collignon), Erin Connolly (Spencer Beecher) and Cara Connolly; step-granddaughter Alycia Winchester; great- grandchildren Ava and Leo Collignon; sisters Berta R. Uribe and Pam Bankerd (Javier Bazan); and numerous nieces and nephews of whom she was very fond.
She is preceded in death by her parents Ambrosio S. Rodriguez and Celia Valdez, her sister Nina DeVillar and brothers Alex Rodriguez, Fred Rodriguez, Arthur Rodriguez, Ernest Rodriguez, Robert Rodriguez, and Mario Rodriguez.
The family would like to thank staff from Taos County E.M.S., Holy Cross Medical Center and Mountain Home Health & Hospice for their compassionate care and assistance during the last week of Eleanor’s life.
A funeral service will be held in the future and Eleanor will be buried in Chamberlain Cemetery in Kingsville, TX.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Eleanor’s name can be made to St. Gertrude Parish 1120 S. 8th St. Kingsville, TX 78363. Arrangements by Rivera Family Funeral Home, Taos, NM and Turcotte-Piper Mortuary, Kingsville, TX. To share a memory, please visit our website at www.riverafuneralhome.com