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July 12, 1938 -
September 26, 2013
Carlos Enrique Sepulveda A man of sincere humility, probing intellect, and great capacity for friendship, Carlos Enrique Sepulveda died on Thursday, September 26, 2013 in Sugar Land, Texas at the age of 75. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Maria "Maruca" Stuardo-Perez; three grown children, Maria I. Sepulveda, Carlos E. Sepulveda and Paulina McGrath; three grandchildren Anna, Caragh Rose and Jack; two sons-in-law Peter Kirkel and Jim McGrath; and numerous family members in the United States and Chile.
Carlos was born July 12, 1938 in Pichidegua, in the O'Higgins province of Chile (southwest of Santiago), and attended Liceo Miguel L. Amunategui high school in Santiago from 1951 through 1956. It was during high school - and a bus drivers' strike - that he met his future wife, Maria, as he jumped into the back of military truck bound for school.
Displaying a promising aptitude for his studies, Carlos attended the Universidad de Chile from 1957 to 1961, earning his bachelor's degree as an ingeneria comercial. He then accepted a scholarship from the Rockefeller Foundation to attend Yale University. Arriving in New Haven, the lifelong reader later confided he learned to speak English in part by watching American soap operas. He wrote his thesis paper on "A Model of Analysis for the Chilean Inflation 1950-1961," and earned his Master's of Arts in economics in 1964.
Following graduate studies at Yale, Carlos taught at the Universidad de Chile and conducted research at the Instituto de Economia for two years before taking a job in Washington, DC as a staff economist with Organization of American States. One of his earliest projects there involved analyzing the impact of sugar prices on the Cuban economy. Carlos remained with the OAS for the next 17 years, principally in the Washington office but also accepting early postings in Santiago and later in Montevideo, Uruguay.
In 1982, Carlos moved to the InterAmerican Development Bank in Washington, DC, and over the next 18 years rose to the rank of Principal Economist. He traveled extensively throughout the Americas, consulting frequently with government officials and leading academic minds on a host of development issues.
Carlos retired in 2000 and relocated with Maruca to Santiago. Fluent in Spanish and English, and proficient in Portuguese and French, he maintained an abiding interest in the language of the Mapuche Indians of Chile. He loved watching soccer - especially his alma mater "La U" - and the Washington Redskins football team.
Earlier this year, the Sepulvedas moved to the Houston, Texas suburb of Sugar Land to be closer to their children and grandchildren. Carlos Sepulveda was devoted to his family, his friends, and the unceasing pursuit of knowledge. He was, in every way, a good and decent man, and will always be missed and respected by those privileged to know him.
In lieu of a religious service, the family will celebrate Carlos' life with a reception this Sunday at 1902 Hollys Way, Sugar Land, TX 77479 from 3pm to 6pm. A reception will be held in Chile at a later date. Those not able to attend but wishing to honor Carlos' life may make a donation to St. Vincent de Paul School where Carlos' grandchildren attend: www.saintvincentschool.org.
Published in Houston Chronicle on Sept. 28, 2013