Our beautiful and loving wife and mother Maria Saldaña was called to God’s Glory June 4, 2020 surrounded by her family after a long courageous battle with illness. Maria was born on January 1, 1945 in Tejas, San Luis Potosi, Mexico to Maria Corpus and Faustino Castro. Maria was born a twin. As the smaller of the twin newborns she was not expected to survive long and was wet nursed by her older sister Carmen who she called her second mother. Maria thrived but tragically her twin passed at 17 months. Maria’s fighting spirit and will to live served throughout her life as she thrived. Maria’s youth was surrounded by a loving and hardworking family with 10 siblings. At age 18 she married and started her own family. At age 19 she emigrated to the United States seeking a better life for her family. She worked as a farm laborer and warehouse worker for over 32 years until she retired. In 1980 Maria was widowed and left to raise 5 children. To provide for her family Maria worked two and three jobs such as pruning in the winter, cutting asparagus, picking cherries and apples before she went to work at the warehouse. It was not unusual for Maria to get up at 4 am, cook breakfast, go to work in the fields and then come back to get ready to work in the warehouse. She would then come home to housework and caring for her children.
Maria married Ramon Saldaña, her husband of almost 40 years. Their marriage is one of true love, companionship and friendship. Everyday they got up together, ate their meals together and in between if Ramon was working they spoke on the phone every few hours. Maria is survived by her husband, Ramon Saldaña, her six children Rocio Loera from Sunnyside, Joe (Daveena) Loera from Spokane, Patricia Loera from Seattle, Maria Loera from Pasco, Alfredo Loera Jr from Sunnyside and Ramon Saldaña, Jr (Josefa) from Pasco. Her joy was being a grandma to 12 grandchildren Marco Aguilar (KayLynn), Daniel Valle, Alan Loera (Emily), Alex Valle (Estefany), Vanessa Loera, Gabriel Valle, Alfredo Loera III, Abriel Loera, Marissa Loera, Gabriela Saldaña, Brian Loera and Lucia Saldaña. She was delighted with her great granddaughter Naya Valle and was looking forward to welcoming her second great granddaughter who is arriving soon to Alan and Emily Loera.
Maria’s greatest pride and joy was her family. She was a devoted wife, loving mother, grandma and a loyal friend. Her proudest accomplishment was all her children’s education. She put all six of her children through college and prided herself on having raised professionals and contributing community members including a physician assistant, ER charge nurse, attorney, two social services supervisors and a social service worker. Her second proud moment was passing her citizenship exam and becoming an American Citizen in 1995. She voted in every election and was looking forward to voting this November. She loved the U.S. as a beacon of hope and opportunity. Her third pride and joy was being a doting fierce grandma to her 12 grandchildren. Although she raised her six children with lots of love and support, her emphasis was discipline, hard work and kept all of her children in line. For her grandchildren however – things were a bit different, she focused solely on love, support and encouragement mixed in with some spoiling. She also offered words of advice and wisdom. Her grandchildren always listened and they respected her so much they never talked back. A common phrased used by the grandchildren was “don’t mess with grandma.”
Maria told her family that the inheritance she would leave was not money or property. Her inheritance to us was our Catholic faith, strong work ethic and our education. She always emphasized the importance of being a unified and supportive family who spent time together and supporting each other’s dreams. She was a loyal friend who nurtured long time friendships with neighbors, warehouse co-workers and church members. She loved being a comadre especially to her life-long comadre the late Victoria Loera from La Texanita Bakery. Her vacations were always spent going to visit her family in Mexico or visiting her nieces and nephews around the U.S. often joining them as the representative of her generation at weddings and quinceaneras.
Throughout her life, Maria was blessed with amazing doctors that include the late Dr. P.J. Swofford, Dr. David Swofford, Dr. Blake Bond, Dr. Licht, Dr. Ralph Mclauphin and the staff of DaVita in Zillah especially Carl aka “Carlitos” who she often brought food to make sure he ate.
Maria is preceded in death by her late husband Alfredo Loera, her parents Maria & Faustino Castro, and six of her 10 siblings.
In closing, when saying Good-bye, Maria’s parting words were always “Que Dios te Bendiga.”
Funeral Service will be held on Tuesday, June 9, 2020 at 11:00 a.m. at the Smith Funeral Home, Sunnyside, WA. Those wishing to sign Maria’s online memorial book may do so at www.funeralhomesmith.com Smith Funeral Home is in care of arrangements.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Maria Saldaña, please visit our floral store.