Saturday, January 8, 2005 12:14 PM MST
Jan. 24, 1916 - Jan. 4, 2005
Mario E. Villamarzo, a 33-year, World War II U.S. Army veteran and father of four died on Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2005.
A resident of Sierra Vista, Ariz., for the past eight years, he was born in the family home in Ponce, Puerto Rico, on Jan. 24, 1916.
One of 10 children of a Spanish immigrant, father Jose Villamarzo Lledin, and a Puerto Rican mother, America Lopez Pagan, he was 88 years old. He died at home with his eldest daughter, Gloria.
Mario's long life included many accomplishments, but the one he was most proud of was his marriage to el amor de mis amores - the love of his life, his friend, lover and partner for 62 years. On April 26, 1941, he married this young woman, a daughter of an evangelical preacher, Gloria J. Robles, who preceded him in death in May 2004. Of this union they had three children.
In the beginning of his long Army career he served with the Puerto Rico Army National Guard in the early 1940s. Later, during World War II as a member of the 65th Infantry Regiment he served in North Africa, France and ultimately in Germany as part of the Army of Occupation.
After the war he served at various posts in the Panama Canal Zone, the Continental United States and in West Germany. Capt. Mario E. Villamarzo retired in January 1971.
Mario was an avid baseball enthusiast and an expert crossword puzzle fanatic. He delighted in the view of the Sierra of the Huachucas and the clear blue Arizona sky in the morning and its starlit nights.
His survivors include two sisters, Maria T. Villamarzo of Paterson, N.J., and Josefina N. Ballesteros of Ponce, Puerto Rico; his three daughters, Gloria A. V. Dueltgen (David) of Sierra Vista, Manuela Haag (Joachim) of Owingen, Germany, and Ileana E.V. Vermilyea (Stanley) of Westerville, Ohio; and a son, Mario E. Villamarzo (Yvonne Shattuck) of Lawrenceville, Ga. Also among his survivors are seven grandchildren, seven great- grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation was held at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 10, 2005, with the Rosary was recited at 11:30 a.m. and the funeral service followed at Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church in Sierra Vista. Graveside services with full military honors including a bagpipe farewell and saber salute by B Troop, 4th US Cav Rgmt (Mem) were held at 1 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 10, 2005, at the Southern Arizona Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Sierra Vista.