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  • Maria Tienda

    Birth: April 28, 1933 | Died: August 20, 2020

    In Memoriam

    Maria Francisca Garza Nava (“Panchita”) was born April 28, 1933 in Harlingen, Texas to Maria de Jesus Nava Basaldua and Jose Maria Garza Trevino. Her mother had moved to Harlingen, Texas in the early 1900s during the Mexican Revolution. There she met her future husband and they eventually moved their family back to Lazarillos, Nuevo Leon, Mexico. Her mother was a homemaker and an excellent seamstress. Her father drove a taxi. Both of her parents have preceded her in death. Her siblings included: Federico “Freddy” Nava (deceased); Dolores “Lolita” Garza (deceased); Sanjuana Talamantes (nee Garza); Ana Bella Garza (deceased); Jose Maria “Joe/Chema” Garza; Antonio “Tony” Garza and Andres “Andy” Garza. In the 1950s, her father became ill and Panchita returned to the United States for work to help her mother provide for her younger siblings back home. For many years, she worked as a housekeeper. She would often return home to visit her family. It was during this time that she began to take on a maternal role for her younger siblings. Over the years, her younger brothers have expressed how she was more of a second mother to them than a sister. On March 25, 1962, she married Abelardo Tienda Quiroz in Mexico, and, soon after, came back to the United States and settled in Orange County, California. They had four children together: Sara Tienda, Eric Tienda, Jacqueline “Jackie” Diaz (nee Tienda) and Martha “Marti” Ayala (nee Tienda). Although later divorced, they eventually were able to develop an amicable relationship and enjoyed their grandchildren: Oliva and Brisa Diaz and Mia Ayala and Sofia Ayala. Panchita was a devout Roman Catholic, prayed the Rosary daily and contributed financially to many religious and veteran charities. In fact, one of her last words was to “help the Church.” She loved to cook.She also enjoyed embroidery, watching classic television shows and attending family festivities. Although she suffered with many medical and physical problems the majority of her life, she never gave up and always had faith. She left this world on August 20, 2020 at home surrounded by her children and granddaughters just as she wished. She will be deeply missed by all those who knew her.

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