Celestina "Tina" Marquez (1933 - 2012)

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Celestina "Tina" Marquez was born at her family's ranchito in Anton Chico, on July 16, 1933.

She was the youngest daughter of Petronila M. Sanchez and Bonifacio G. Marquez.

Tina began school in Anton Chico living with her maternal Sanchez grandparents; by 1940, her father, Boni Marquez moved his daughters to Las Vegas where the girls attended Immaculate Conception high school.

In 1949, Tina married WWII Marine veteran John Herman C.de Baca of Mora and they moved to San Diego, Calif., often visiting family and friends throughout New Mexico.

On Oct. 14, 2012, she died peacefully at 79 years old, after suffering strokes without regaining consciousness.

Tina received the last Christian rites and her old friend Bishop Gilbert Chavez celebrated her life during a Catholic mass in the San Diego diocese. She fully enjoyed family gatherings, Latino telenovelas, sports, and Democrat politics. She voted for President Barack Obama as her last conscious act.

In his lifetime, Tina's father Boni Marquez was a rancher in Anton Chico, a deputy U.S. Marshal, manager of the state asylum, and long-time owner of Boni's Liquor on Grand Avenue in Las Vegas. In 1940, Mr. Marquez was a New Mexico delegate to the Democrat National Convention that re-nominated Franklin Delano Roosevelt for his third of four victorious presidential elections.

When Tina married John C.de Baca, she joined his family's long connection to New Mexico politics including AZI fraternity activity at Highlands University. The C.de Baca family produced the first Hispano State governor in U.S. history, two lieutenant governors, and a few speakers of the state house including primo, Donaldo "Tiny" Martinez. Family discussions about "Mama Lucy" Democrats took place often.

Tina's parents, husband, infant brother David, and sister Gloria Marquez predeceased her.

Her beautiful sister, Perla Marquez-Jorgensen of Salt Lake City, Utah, survives as well as her brothers-in-law, Justin Valdez of Mora and James Valdez of Lubbock, Texas.

Tina's immediate survivors include a son Vincent C. de Baca of Denver, Colo. and daughters Claire C.de Baca of Bellingham, Wash., Leticia Bryant of Aurora, Colo., Angel de Young and Dolores C.de Baca both of San Diego, Colo. Tina had 14 grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. She enjoyed the company of a large extended family, seven God-children, and many friends.

A burial of Tina's remains and those of her mother, Nila Sanchez-Marquez will take place at noon, on Saturday, April 6, in the St. Joseph [San Jose] Catholic Cemetery of Anton Chico. Around 2 p.m., the family will begin a reception at "Charlie's Spic & Span" café in Las Vegas.
Published in Las Vegas Optic on Apr. 1, 2013
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