Carmen Ruiz Lopez, age 86, was called to heaven on June 23, 2020. Born in Morelia, Michoacan, Mexico on February 11, 1934 to Cornelio Ruiz and Jovita Cedeno. She was raised and educated in Morelia where she graduated from the Universidad Michoacana de San Nicolas Hidalgo with a degree in pharmacy. She held great pride in her father’s trust illustrated by his capital investment to open her own pharmacy. She dispensed medicine and her caramelo personality to all those seeking treatments and remedies for their health issues.
While she loved being a pharmacist and her life in Morelia, on February 9, 1957 Carmen followed her heart marrying the love of her life, Luis. After their honeymoon, Luis and Carmen immigrated to San Antonio, Texas to start their beautiful life together. Soon after the birth of their third daughter, the couple moved to Corpus Christi in 1960 when Luis accepted a mechanical position advancing his career. Two years later, a property on Agnes St. perfect for a mechanic shop came on the market. Carmen was very astute and learned from her entrepreneurial father “a penny saved is a penny earned.” Taking out a sock from the bedroom dresser, she surprised Luis revealing that over the past 5 years, she was “socking away” cash from his earnings. The savings provided the down payment to launch Center Automatic Transmission and Engine Exchange, the family business.
Carmen was deeply devoted to her family and nurtured life-long friendships. Many were blessed with her thoughtfulness with handwritten messages she would convey in cards and letters. She loved cooking authentic Mexican food to bring family and friends together. She delighted in organizing parties and adding special touches to celebrate life’s milestones. She enjoyed hobbies and social time. Over the years, her social circuit included knitting & crochet group, bunco group, the lunch bunch, Los Amigos Club, and the Instituto de Cultura Hispanica.
In her earthly journey, Carmen learned the yoga practice at Feminique. When the club was seeking a new instructor, the manager asked Carmen if she would be interested in teaching. For over 30 years she taught the practice of mind and body to many women at the club and later gave private classes in her home.
Carmen found comfort and strength from her deeply held Catholic faith and devotion to the Virgin. She and Luis treasured their visits to iconic basilicas as they traveled extensively in the United States, Mexico, Canada, Latin America, and Europe. While her presence for those who knew and loved her will be missed, we rejoice in knowing that God has called home Carmen, and she will be our heavenly angel praying for us.
Her creative and artistic side were unleashed when she started taking repujado classes at St. John’s United Methodist Church. She recruited Luis as her apprentice and they spent countless hours in the evenings and weekends working on art pieces that were shown in local galleries. It made her very happy to gift her art items to friends and family.
Carmen was preceded in death by her parents and her brothers Jesus Ruiz, Jose Ruiz, and Daniel Ruiz and son-in-law, William T. Smith, Jr. Left to cherish memories and sharing her spirit with others is Luis, her husband of 63 years, as well as, daughter Jovita Lopez Smith, Lourdes Lopez Storey and her husband Milton; Linda Lopez-George and her husband Aubrey; grandchildren Gabriella and Matthew Storey; Carolyn and Nathaniel George. She is also survived by her sister, Maria Teresa Machorro, brother Alberto Ruiz and numerous nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers will be Nathaniel George, Matthew Storey, Aubrey George and Milton Storey.
Visitation will be held from 5:00 to 9:00 PM with a Rosary commencing at 7:00 PM on Friday June 26th at Seaside REID Chapel. A funeral mass will be celebrated on Saturday June 27th at 1:30 PM at Most Precious Blood Catholic Church. Burial to follow at Seaside Memorial Park. Due to COVID-19 restrictions a maximum of 65 people can be in attendance, masks will be required for those who wish to attend.
In lieu of flowers, if you wish to honor Carmen’s memory, please consider a gift to the Carmen Ruiz Lopez Memorial Endowment for Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases, a permanent endowment at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Contributions may be mailed to: UT Health San Antonio, 7703 Floyd Curl Drive, Mail Code 7835, San Antonio, Texas 78229-3900 or online https://makelivesbetter.uthscsa.edu/biggsdonate or the charity of your choice.
Please reference the Carmen Ruiz Lopez Memorial Endowment in your gift transmittal.
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