RODRIGUEZ--Mary Galvez, 90, a foreign language teacher at Hunter College High School from 1951 to 1984 died October 22, 2012 of natural causes in Baltimore. Mrs. Rodriguez was born in Brooklyn in 1921, the second of five children of Cristobal and Maria Galvez, Spanish immigrants from Alhama de Almeria, Spain. In 1940, at age 18, she married Melchor Rodriguez, also from her parents' home town. In that same year, she began college at Hunter College. When WWII broke out and her husband was drafted, she went to work for the Office of Censorship, reading mail from soldiers in French and Portuguese. At the end of the war, she returned to full time studies, graduating Hunter in 1946. In 1946 she had the first of three children, Melchor who was to die in an auto accident in 1956. In 1948 she gave birth to a daughter Maria Teresa, and in 1959 to a son Francisco, known as Paco. In 1951, she began work at Hunter College High School in Manhattan, a position she adored. Teaching Spanish and French, she eventually achieved the role of acting head of the department of foreign languages in the 1970's. In 1984, she accelerated her retirement to be with her husband who was to die shortly thereafter from complications of a stroke. She relocated to Sound Beach, Long Island, where she lived near many family members until 2002 when she moved to Baltimore to be closer to her grandchildren. An avid traveler, she toured the world with family, friends and Elder Hostels for many years. Mrs. Rodriguez is survived by a brother, Mathias Galvez of Schenectady, NY as well as two sisters Nancy Lorenzo of Ridgefield Park, NJ and Gloria Vales of Sewickley, PA. She is also survived by her two children, six grandchildren and one great-grandchild. A viewing will be held at the O.B. Davis Funeral Home in Miller Place, NY on Thursday from 2-4 and 7-9pm. Funeral Mass Friday 11am. at St. Louis de Montfort R.C. Church. Interment Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. www.obdavis.com
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Published in The New York Times on Oct. 24, 2012