Thelma E. Valles, 90, of Durango, Colorado, passed away peacefully with family by her side. She was born on June 13, 1929, in Tiffany, Colorado, to Alfredo and Beatrice (Abeyta) Garcia. She was the fourth of fourteen children. Thelma attended schools in the rural Tiffany and Allison area. She married Roy G. Valles, of Fruita, Colorado, on March 9, 1957 and together, they welcomed and raised five daughters.
Thelma grew up in a farming family where a strong work ethic was instilled and carried on in her dedication to numerous jobs throughout her life. She worked in various hotels with laundry service, where later, her love for cooking took her to Needham Elementary School. There she worked for twelve years retiring in 1992. After retirement, Thelma opened her home providing child care for area children, in addition to doing elder care for several neighborhood families.
Cooking and gardening brought great joy to Thelma. Her Navajo tacos were a family favorite, along with her cinnamon rolls, sugar cookies and biscochitos. Blessed with a green thumb, she took great pride and care of her plants and impeccable flower gardens. Her generosity showed in her support of several charities that were near and dear to her heart. Family was always her priority and was happiest when everyone was together. Thelma will always be remembered for her tremendous love and devotion to family and friends, and especially her unwavering faith and trust in God.
Survivors include her five daughters; Cindy (Arthur) Tucson, of Durango; Teresa (Steve) Wamel of Bloomfield, NM; Cora (Brian) Avila of Modesto, CA; Christine (Pat) Tabor of Brighton, CO and Debbie (Mike) Voss of Durango; eleven grandchildren, ten siblings, many nieces, nephews and cousins. She is preceded in death by her parents and three sisters.
Recitation of the Rosary will be Monday, September 30, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be Tuesday, October 1, 2019 at 11 a.m., both at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 254 E. 5th Avenue, Durango, Colorado. Interment will follow at Greenmount Cemetery. A reception will be held following services at Sacred Heart Parish Hall.
The family would like to express our sincere thanks to Hospice Care of Durango for your wonderful care and support. We are forever grateful. Thelma E. Valles
Published in The Durango Herald on Sep. 24, 2019.