Our beloved mother, Romana Montalvo Florez, went home to be with the Lord on Monday, December 7, 2020. She was surrounded by the love of her children as she found eternal peace (she did always love the word “siesta.”) The first of eight children, Romana was born to the late Samuel Montalvo and Rafaela Cavazos Montalvo on September 6, 1935 at Tanquecitos Ranch near Lyford, Texas.
Romanita’s contribution to her family included running the family store in Santa Monica, and caring for her siblings. As the storyteller of the family, she was often selected to read stories to her entire school, and won many spelling bees. Romana also loved to draw and write with such beauty and artistry; it profoundly influenced her children’s own experience of art and beauty. Romana married the late Louis Florez on November 26, 1964. They moved from the Rio Grande Valley to Terrell, Texas where they raised their four children, and also helped to support many other family members on life’s journey.
Romie worked for the Kaufman Independent School District for 25 years as a Teacher’s Assistant for both English and ESL students, as well as a Bilingual Interpreter for the school. She was dearly loved by teachers, students, and parents; known for her beautiful smile, loving spirit, and being a great listener and healing advisor for those in need. Administrators praised Romie as a “Wonder Woman; helping tremendously with the Hispanic population” and being “the backbone of our campus, giving back to the world in profound ways.”
Romanita had several nicknames, but the one she loved most was given by her children, “Mamacita.” She was a devoted mother who loved to brag about her “chickadees” and greeted them with the biggest hugs. As a wonderful cook, her “cocina” was filled with delicious aromas starting at 5:00 am every morning with handmade tortillas. When asked her secret to cooking, she would say, “I put all my love into it.” Romie loved playing bingo, card games, and was the domino champion when playing with her grand daughters, Christa & Gabrielle.
Romana was preceded in death by her parents; her loving husband of 50 years, Louis Florez; brothers, Samuel Montalvo Jr., Eriberto Montalvo, Rodolfo Montalvo, and sister, Maria Aurora Graham. She is survived by her children, Leticia Florez Irvin and husband, Rodger, and their daughters, Christa and Gabrielle; HariShabad Khalsa “Sandra Florez” and husband, Anthony Del Rio Low; Nicolas Florez and husband, RJ Durell; and Louis Florez Jr. Also surviving Romana are her two brothers, Rafael Montalvo and Miguel Montalvo and wife, Enriqueta; sister Lucia Garza and husband Paul, brother-in-law, John R. Graham, and sisters-in-law, Maria Escamilla Montalvo, Dora Elfida Montalvo and Melba Solis.