Long time Brownsville resident Viola G. Ruenes, passed away peacefully on Oct. 24, 2012, in San Antonio, Texas after a prolonged illness.|
Viola was born in Raymondville, Texas to Maria C. Gomez and Hilario Gomez on July 3, 1922. She married Ramon Ruenes from San Benito, Texas on Dec. 31, 1941.
After the war, the young couple moved with their family to Brownsville to raise their children and start their business. Viola and Ramon were the proprietors of the Victoria and Ruenes Drive-in Theaters and the operators of the Capitol Theater. From the founding of their first movie theater in 1946, the couple went on to own a chain of movie theaters in the Rio Grande Valley, Corpus Christi, and San Antonio.
Viola enjoyed a long and loving relationship with family and friends and strong ties to the Brownsville community. She was a parishioner of the Immaculate Conception Cathedral, Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, and St. Joseph's Catholic Church. As a life-long supporter of both Incarnate Word/Villa Maria schools and St. Joseph Academy, Viola formed countless friendships across generational lines. She particularly enjoyed the St. Joe football games and is still remembered for her enthusiastic ringing of a big cow bell at the games. She was an honorary member of Conroe Theresians, an international organization devoted to St. Therese of the Little Flower.
Viola was known as a caring and loving wife, mother, grandmother, and friend. Family and friends lovingly called her Ganca and will forever remember her for her great smile, happy disposition, quick wit, and huge heart. She never missed an opportunity to be with her friends in happy and sad times. Her loyalty was her hallmark; her faith was the leading light of her life.
Viola was preceded in death by her husband who died in 1985.
She is survived by her four children and their spouses: Mary Esther and Bob Gross, Raymond and Maite Ruenes, Larry and Viola S. Ruenes, and Ricky and Carmen Ruenes. Viola had 11 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren. Monica Gross-Hendricks and sons Harrison and Christopher; Bobby Gross and sons Jordan and Benjamin; Raymond Gross and wife Lizette and daughter Camila; Ramon Ruenes IV, Alex Ruenes, Gabby Ruenes and wife Heidi, and Maria Helena Ruenes; Mark Ruenes and wife Mayte and sons Nicholas and Matthew; David Ruenes, Rick Ruenes and wife Theresa and daughter Sarah; Tricia Ruenes Subbiah and husband Parsanna and son Ian.
Viola is also survived by three siblings, Lalo and Irma Gomez of Raymondville, Margaret Gomez Puente of Raymondville, and Lydia Gomez Rodriguez and her husband Ignacio; numerous nieces and nephews whom she loved dearly but she had a special bond with Eduardo Ramon Izaguirre and his wife Chela from McAllen; and countless friends.
Visitation will begin from 3 to 9 p.m. with the recitation of the holy rosary at 7 p.m., today, Friday, Oct. 26, in the East Chapel at Darling-Mouser Funeral Home.
The funeral Mass will be at 10 a.m., on Saturday, Oct. 27, at St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 555 West St. Francis St.
Committal services will follow in Raymondville, Texas at Raymondville Memorial Cemetery.
Viola's grandsons, Robert Gross II, Raymond Gross, Mark Ruenes, David Ruenes, Rick Ruenes Jr., Ramon Ruenes III, Alex Ruenes, and Gabriel Ruenes are honored to be serving as pallbearers for their beloved grandmother.
Honorary pallbearers will be all former employees of the Ruenes Theaters.
You may view the obituary, sign the guestbook, and send your condolences online to the Ruenes family at www.darlingmouser.com
Funeral arrangements have been entrusted to Darling-Mouser Funeral Home, 945 Palm Blvd, Brownsville, TX 78520, 956-546-7111.
Published in Brownsville Herald on Oct. 26, 2012