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Ruben Dario Flores
Ruben Dario Flores passed away peacefully Tuesday, March 25, 2014 in San Antonio, Texas surrounded by his family. Ruben was a devoted son, husband, father, grandfather and brother. Born November 18, 1939, in Del Rio, Texas, Ruben dedicated his life to his family and advocating for access to higher education.
Growing up in Del Rio in the1950's, Ruben worked as a migrant worker as a child to earn money to help his family. He always knew getting an education would provide him with the opportunity to help others. He served in the United States Marine Corps for four years and later earned his college degree thanks to the GI Bill. In his 20's, he was part of the Mexican American civil rights movement. He attended San Antonio College where he earned an Associate's Degree in Government, St. Mary's University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations as well as Occidental College where he earned a Master's Degree in Urban Studies.
After his undergraduate degree, Ruben returned to his high school alma mater San Felipe High School in Del Rio where he taught American Government and History. His love of sports allowed him to also serve the school as a basketball coach where he led the San Felipe Mustangs to a co-district basketball championship.
His passion for civil rights and politics inspired him to be a community organizer in San Antonio and later Del Rio where he served as a city councilman from 1968-1971. His win earned him the distinction of being the first Mexican American elected to city council in Del Rio.
In 1971, he was a national finalist for the White House Fellows Program. In 1972, he was selected for the National Urban Fellows and served as assistant to the City Manager in Boulder, Colorado. By 1973, he was hired as assistant city manager in San Jose, California.
In 1983, Ruben and his family moved to San Antonio where he accepted a position with San Antonio College where he served for 28 years. By 1986, Ruben became Dean of Extended Services, Evening/Weekend/Distance Education. For the next 25 years he was instrumental in advocating for access to postsecondary education for first generation college students. He created programs and initiatives to ensure urban high school students would succeed in college. He is credited with starting the Senior Summer Program, the "Consejos" and "Promotores de Educación" as well as a Leadership Development program, all with the mission to involve parents in their child's education, and help Latino students reach their full potential.
Ruben also served as a member of the American GI Forum and the Veterans of Foreign Wars; board member and president of Positive Solutions Charter School and was appointed to serve on the City of San Antonio Literacy Commission.
There is no doubt Ruben's commitment to higher education influenced many in our community and in particular his oldest son, Ruben Michael, who is the current President of Palo Alto College in San Antonio.
Upon retirement in 2012, Ruben was able to enjoy his time with his granddaughters, his "little girls," Alexis of Laredo, Texas and Mara and Mia Flores of San Antonio. An avid sports fan, Ruben enjoyed rooting for the Dallas Cowboys, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Texas Longhorns.
He is preceded in death by his sons, Roel Ian and Thomas Flores; his sister, Evangelina Flores Rang and his brother, Rodolfo Roel Flores.
Ruben is survived by his loving wife of 46 years, Acenete Flores; sons, Ruben Michael Flores and wife, Martha and Roel Nicholas Flores; granddaughters, Alexis, Mara and Mia; brother, Jesus Ramon Flores, Jr.; sisters, Elia Imelda Diaz, and Elnita Escontrias and many brother- and sister-in-laws. Visitation will be on Sunday, March 30, 2014 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Porter Loring on McCullough.
MARCH 30, 2014
PORTER LORING CHAPEL
MARCH 31, 2014
FROM PORTER LORING CHAPEL
SAN FERNANDO CATHEDRAL
Interment in San Fernando Cemetery No. 3. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Ruben Flores First Generation Scholarship Fund with the Alamo Colleges Foundation. Send to: Office of the President, Attn: Flores Scholarship, 1400 Villaret Blvd. San Antonio, TX 78224, call 210-485-0044 or visit alamo.edu/foundation and designate "Ruben Flores First Generation Scholarship".
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Published in Express-News on Mar. 28, 2014