799 Brawley Ave
Brawley, CA 92227
(760) 344-1414
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Mar. 17, 1925 - May 11, 2014

Joe Padilla passed away at his home in Brawley with his wife Delia and family members close by on Sunday, May 11, 2014. Joe was born on March 17, 1925 in Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico to his parents, Geronimo and San Juana Padilla. Joe's father was a founding member of the Hidalgo Society in Brawley. Joe Padilla lived a long life of service to his country and his community. Joe immigrated to the Imperial Valley in 1928. As a young man, he supported his family by working as a migrant farmworker following the crops up and down the State of California. When WW II broke out, he entered the Army and served his country as a soldier in India, Burma, and China. His name is etched in the Veteran's Memorial in Brawley's City Plaza. After returning home from the war he married his wife of 63 years, Delia Real, and they settled in Brawley and raised four children. Because of his army service, Joe gained his citizenship and was able to leave the fields and support his family as a truck driver for more than 30 years, most of them as a Teamster union member. Joe was a deeply religious man. At his parish, Our Lady of Perpetual Help, he was a member of the Holy Name Society and a 4th Degree Knight in the Knights of Columbus. He also taught catechism classes and was a Eucharistic minister ministering to the sick. In addition to serving his church, Joe was active in serving his community. Joe was an active member of the Brawley American Citizens Club where he served as President in the 1950's. He was also a member of the Mutualista Miguel Hidalgo. Upon retirement, Joe ran for school board and won a seat on the Board of Education for the Brawley Elementary School District. As a school board member for 24 years, Joe sought to ensure that all the children in Brawley would have an equal chance to a quality education. Local musicians, like those who played for him on his final birthday in March will remember Joe's love for music- Big Band and boleros- and the duet "Los Dos" sung with his wife Delia.
Joe is survived by his wife, Delia and their children Jose, Armando, Irene and Eddie; their spouses, Deborah, Patsy, Carlos and Vivian; 11 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his brothers and sisters: Manuel, Mario, Antonia, Socorro, Teresa, Ramona, Katarina, Marta and numerous nephews and nieces.
Services to celebrate Joe's life will be held on Sunday, May 18, 2014 at Frye Chapel at 6 p.m. with rosary being said at 6:30 p.m. Mass and services will be held on Monday, May 19, 2014 at 9 a.m. at Our Lady of Perpetual Help, located at 1250 B Street, Brawley. Burial will follow immediately after mass in River View Cemetery.
The family respectfully asks that in lieu of flowers donations be made in Joe's name to California Rural Legal Assistance, Inc., to support the rights of farmworkers throughout California. Donations can be sent to CRLA, Inc. at 449 Broadway, El Centro, California, 92243.

Published in Imperial Valley Press Online from May 15 to May 16, 2014
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