Our beloved husband, father, son, brother, grandfather, uncle and friend, Ernest M. Morales, 54, of Las Cruces left his dwelling place on earth and entered eternal life to be with his heavenly Father on Sunday, Feb. 24, 2013 at Mountain View Regional Medical Center surrounded by his loving family. He was born May 23, 1958 in Las Cruces to Joe and Velia Barela Morales. Ernest served his country honorably in the U.S. Navy and was employed at NASA as a mechanical technician. He enjoyed riding his Harley Davidson motorcycle and building and riding around in his '30 Ford Coupe. He also loved sandblasting murals on glass, airbrushing, painting, and playing his guitar. Ernest was a member of the Catholic Church. Those left to mourn his passing include his loving wife, Victoria "Vicki" Garcia Morales of the family home; two daughter, Stephanie Morales and fiancé Christopher Baca, Mindy Franich and husband Christopher, all of Las Cruces; his father, Joe Morales of Tucson, Ariz.; two brothers, Ralph Martinez and Ruben Morales; three sisters, Jenny Morales, Lulu Barela and Linda Agosto, all of Las Cruces. Other survivors include three grandchildren, Christopher Jesus Baca, Cody and Evan Franich as well as numerous aunts, uncles and cousins. He was preceded in death by his mother, Velia Barela and stepfather, Louie Barela.Visitation for Ernest will begin at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013 in Our Lady of Purification Catholic Church, 5525 Cristo Rey in Doña Ana where the prayer vigil is scheduled for 7 p.m. Family and friends will join together to celebrate the funeral mass at 2 p.m. Friday, March 1, 2013 in the same church with Rev. Miguel Macaya officiating. Cremation will follow and inurnment of cremains will be held at a later date. Military honors will be accorded by a U.S. Navy Honor Guard and the Marines Corps League – El Perro Diablo Detachment. A farewell gathering will follow at 4 p.m. in the Elks Lodge #1119, 3200 Elks Drive in Las Cruces. Serving as casket bearers will be David and Johnny Garcia, Johnny Miramontes, Ruben Morales, Ralph Martinez and Michael Saenz. Entrusted to Baca's Funeral Chapels of Las Cruces and Sunset Crematory. 527-2222 Your exclusive providers for "Veterans and Family Memorial Care." For online condolences, log on to www.bacasfuneralchapelslascruces.com.
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Published in Las Cruces Sun-News on Feb. 27, 2013