Joseph Franklin Hernandez, longtime area resident, died Sunday afternoon, June 1, 2014 at the Valley View Villa in Fort Morgan. He was 101 years of age.
Frank was born in Mora, NM on March 23, 1913 to Porferio & Coltilda (Pacheco) Hernandez. As a young man, he worked on a ranch in New Mexico. It was in New Mexico where he met Virginia Rodriguez, who became the love of his life. They married on August 17, 1936 in Roy, NM. The couple lived in Longmont before making Morgan County their home in 1953. Frank farmed and ranched his entire life. He retired from a ranch in Wiggins, but continued working, mowing lawns throughout the community until the age of 97. Work became like a hobby for Frank, as he often said, "I have 206 bones in my body and not one is a lazy bone!" Frank & Virginia both understood the meaning of true commitment and strong faith, as they celebrated 74 years of marriage in 2010. Virginia died in 2011 at the age of 91. Their lives and love were a testimony to the lasting covenant that they had in their marriage.
Frank was a member of Saint Helena's Catholic Church in Fort Morgan. His hobbies included gardening, woodworking, and freelance barbering. He loved to play the banjo, the violin, and the guitar. He also liked to watch baseball and boxing. Perhaps his greatest enjoyment came from spending time and visiting with his family and his friends.
Frank is survived by three children; Eddie (Rosina) Hernandez, Stella (Gilbert) Lujan, and Emily Avalos, 17 grandchildren, 8 great grandchildren, and 3 great-great grandchildren.
In addition to his wife, he was also preceded in death by his parents; three sisters, Margaret Estrada, Mary Velasquez, and Genieve Crespin; his son, David Hernandez; his daughter, Hope Rodarte; his grandsons, Jose Hernandez and Stephen Lujan; and his great granddaughter, Shontelle Bedarde.
Visitation is today, June 5th from 5 - 7 PM followed by a Rosary Vigil at 7:00 PM at the Heer Mortuary Chapel in Fort Morgan. Mass of Christian Burial will be Friday, June 6th at 10:30 AM at Saint Helena's Catholic Church in Fort Morgan. Interment will follow in Memory Gardens Cemetery in Fort Morgan.