Early on the morning of December 29, 2019, Louis Antonio Ruiz Sr. joined his beloved wife, Marcella Olivares Ruiz, in the eternal care of our Lord Jesus Christ. He was 90 years old.
Visitation will be on Monday, January 6, 2020, at Harper-Talasek Funeral Home in Temple, Texas, from 5 to 8 pm, with Rosary recited at 7 pm. Services will be at 10:00 am on Tuesday, January 7, at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church. Interment will follow at Bellwood Memorial Cemetery.
Born on November 10, 1929, in the mountainous region of Cayey, Puerto Rico, Louis was the son of Alejandro Ruiz Soler and Conception Davila Feliciano. Orphaned at an early age, he was raised with great care by his mother’s family. He loved Puerto Rico and kept in touch with his family there throughout his life.
As a young man, Louis moved to New York and worked at General Motors. He enlisted in the U.S. Army during the Korean War and served as a radio operator skilled in Morse code. During part of his military service, he was stationed at the boundary of the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea. Later, he was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, where he met and married Marcella, whom he treasured his entire life. After his military service ended, Louis and Marcella moved to New York. While in New York, they had two children, Linda and Louis Jr. But they soon returned to Texas to be near Marcella’s family in Temple, Texas, where their youngest child, Rose Anna, was born. He adopted Marcella’s oldest son, Richard Suarez, and lived in Temple the rest of his life.
In 1960, Louis began his career with the U.S. Postal Service in Temple, where he served as a carrier and clerk until he retired to care for his ailing wife in 1987. He tenderly cared for Marcella until her passing in 2015.
Louis had a sharp mind, boundless energy, and many interests, ranging from bass fishing, bowling with the Knights of Columbus, playing guitar in the church, and hosting a Sunday radio program as a disc jockey at KMIL in Cameron, Texas. He loved and cared for his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, and he always made time to support their interests. He also greatly enjoyed the company of his neighbors and many friends.
Marcella’s life centered around family and the church, and it was Marcella who brought Louis into the parish at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church. He joined the Cursillo Movement of the Catholic Church, which nurtured his spiritual life. By God’s grace, Louis and Marcella joined many in the Central Texas community to raise funds, acquire land, and build a Cursillo Center in Jarrell, Texas. Louis served as the Cursillo Center's Director for many years, and it is now recognized as a National Cursillo Center. In 2004, Louis was awarded the Lumen Gentium (Light of Nations) award by the Catholic Diocese of Austin.
Louis will be greatly missed by his surviving family: brother, William Rosa; son, Louis A. Ruiz Jr.; daughters, Linda Ruiz McCall and Rose Ruiz Manning; granddaughters Jacqueline Marcella McCall, Angelina Michelle McCall, Alexandra Louise McCall, and Susan Groeneveld; grandson Robert Louis Ruiz; and great-grandchildren Stephen Paulsen, Kaiden Paulsen, Sophia Isabel Ruiz, Dominic Louis Ruiz, Lillian Louise Johnson, and Antonio Lee Ruiz; many nieces, nephews, and cousins; and his pug Rusty.
The family would like to give special thanks to Father Tom Chamberlain, Dr. Stephen Walker and caregivers; Linda Gongora, Manuela Rivera, and Olivia Katsoulas. In lieu of flowers, charitable contributions to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Temple, Texas, would be appreciated.