Mauricio Joe "Ficho" Ruiz, 74, lived most of his life in Las Cruces and entered eternal life Saturday, Aug. 24, 2013, at his daughter's home surrounded by his loving family. "Ficho," as he was fondly known to family and close friends, was born Sept. 12, 1938, in Lincoln, Neb., to Manuel and Margarita Estorga Ruiz. He served his country honorably in the U.S. Army
, U.S. Navy
and the National Guard. Ficho was a masonry contractor, who took great pride in his work and was dedicated to his profession for over 50 years. His primary profession and one that he loved living was his dedicated service to the Lord in ministry. Ficho was the pastor of The Voice of Faith Church/La Voz de Fe in Las Cruces for about 10 years and was one of the first churches in this city that was bilingual. While in ministry, he evangelized in Columbia and throughout Mexico, which he loved doing. He touched many lives and was loved by so many as he brought forth the Lord's message of hope and restoration. Brother Ficho will be greatly missed. Ficho also loved the outdoors and was an avid fisherman who tried to get out to the lake or the ocean as much as possible. In addition, he loved hunting for deer and elk but unfortunately was limited to that sport due to failing health, but he taught his sons to hunt and fish and he enjoyed hearing their stories of the "Big one that got away" or "the one they came home with." Before going home to be with the Lord, his desire was to have as much of his family together for a fish fry and one week before making heaven his home, his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, brothers, sisters, nephews, nieces and close friends fulfilled his wish. Those left to mourn his passing include three sons, Michael J. Ruiz, Russell Ruiz and Robert Ruiz and wife Stephanie; two daughters, Kathy Jordan and husband Pastor Mark and Marty Ruiz-Garcia and husband Xavier; seven brothers, Raymond Ruiz, John Ruiz and wife Cyndi, Raymond Estorga Jr. and wife Martha, Joe Ruiz, Ricky Ruiz, Danny Ruiz and Manuel Ruiz; six sisters, Rose Randolph, Margarita Najera and husband Ernest, Berna Garcia and husband Richard, Chole Ruiz, Faby Raught and husband Larry and Pat Vega. Other survivors include 12 grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren as well as numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, two sons, Rodney Edmond Ruiz and Joseph M. Ruiz Jr., three brothers and a sister. At Mr. Ruiz request cremation has taken place and a memorial service is scheduled for 10 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 30, 2013, at Calvary Christian Church, 4211 Elks Drive, Las Cruces, with Pastor Mark Jordan officiating. Inurnment of cremains will be held at a later date in the Masonic Cemetery with military honors where he will be laid to rest together with his sons. A special thank you to John Ferrales for the wonderful care and attention given to your grandfather before and during his illness. You lit up every corner of his room whenever you were with grandpa. Service arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Baca's Funeral Chapels and Sunset Crematory 300 E. Boutz Road Las Cruces. 527-2222.