Don R. Casados Jr.
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Don R. Casados, Jr. Passed away on February 26, 2012 surrounded by his loving family. He was born on Easter Sunday, April 20, 1924 on the family ranch in Mora, New Mexico. He is preceded in death by his parents, Don R. Casados, Sr. and Candelaria Rudolph Casados, his sister Caroline Casados Rivera, his son Mark Anthony Casados, sister-in-law Manuela Rivera Dossett, nephews Patrick Maynez and Douglas Dossett. Don is survived by Katherine, his loving wife of 65 years, his son Dennis and wife Teresa; four grandchildren, Melissa Casados (John Gutierrez), Darren Casados (Jolene), Marla Pettingill (Marty) and Brandon Casados; eight great-grandchildren, Arlene, Steven, Marissa, Darren, Jr., Bianca, Alyssa, Darin, and Darien. Don is also survived by in-laws Ruth S. Ortiz, Oscar and Julietta Maynez, Rudy and Margaret Garcia and nephews and nieces. Don attended the Sisters of Loretto Convent in Mora, New Mexico for his primary schooling. The family moved to Santa Fe in the early 1930s and he was enrolled at St. Michael's College, graduating with the class of 1941. Don was an honor student, class leader and star football player, winner of several elocution contests, spelling bees, and recipient of many medals and certificates. In 1937 he was granted a four year academic scholarship to St. Michael's College. In January 1943 Don was drafted into the United States Army where he participated in the Battle of the Bulge under the leadership of General George S. Patton's 3rd Army, 312th Engineer Battalion, 87th Infantry Division, Golden Acorn Company. He participated in campaigns in the freezing cold dense forests of the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe. He received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees from Highlands in 1949. He earned State of New Mexico Department of Education Administrative and Secondary Certificates and also held the Guidance Counselor Certificate. Don led a long and distinguished career as a New Mexico educator. His professional experience included 37 years of devoted service to the Santa Fe Public Schools beginning in 1949 spanning 5 decades and retiring in 1986. He served as Director of Testing for the Santa Fe Public Schools, taught Spanish and New Mexico History at Harvey Junior High School, Civics at B.F. Young Junior High School, and U.S. History at Santa Fe High School. Don also served as Guidance Counselor and Assistant Principal at Santa Fe High School. He was named Principal of Santa Fe Mid-High School in 1965 and served as sole principal for 11 years. He became Associate Principal and summer school Principal at Santa Fe High School in 1976 and in 1982 he was named Principal of Santa Fe High School, retiring in 1986. He was a member of the New Mexico Education Association, National Education Association, Psi Chi National Honorary Society in Psychology, Pi Gamma Mu National Social Science Honor Society, Charter Member and Associate of the New Mexico State Psychological Association, Associate Member of the American Psychological Association, 87th Infantry Division Association Veterans of the Battle of the Bulge, American Legion Post 1, and lifetime member of the Elks Lodge #460. He was a charter member and organizer of the Santa Fe Babe Ruth baseball league and coached little league baseball. He was a charter member of the Disabled World War II Veteran Memorial in Washington, D.C. In 1986 an award was established in his name to be given each year to the Outstanding Teacher at Santa Fe High School. In 1992 he was named Person of the Year by the Coronado Kiwanis Club. Don never sought personal recognition but he earned the respect of his colleagues and the influence he instilled in so many of his students will be long and everlasting. He was praised for his leadership, work ethic, thoroughness, commitment and steadfast dedication to excellence. He was the ultimate professional and not one to rest on laurels or fanfare. Don's approach at handling not just students, but staff, parents and the community was always professional and above the call of duty. As an educator for 37 years Don touched many lives and molded a genuine foundation for the youth of Santa Fe. His basic philosophy toward his student body and faculty was "live and let live, work and let work, take one day at a time, don't dwell on past mistakes and don't worry about future ones". He took pride in his students upon graduation knowing they left with confidence and pride toward future goals and challenges. Don's legacy will be one of quiet faith and devotion and his fond expressions to his commitment to God, family and country. The family expresses its heartfelt gratitude to the doctors, nurses and all staff at St. Vincent Hospital and Presbyterian Hospice Services for their loving care during his final days. Visitation will take place at McGee Chapel on Thursday, March 1, 2012 from 5 - 7 p.m., followed by a Rosary at 7 p.m. The funeral Mass will be celebrated at 8 a.m. on Friday, March 2, 2012 at St. Francis Cathedral. Burial services will be held at 9:45 a.m. at the Santa Fe National Cemetery. Pallbearers are: Brandon Casados, Darren Casados, Darren Casados, Jr., John Gutierrez, Bobby Martinez, and Jimmy Sosaya. Honorary pallbearers: Louie Casados, Patrick Casey and Carlos Gallegos. In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to the Carmelite Monastery, 49 Mt. Carmel Road, Santa Fe, NM 87505. Berardinelli Family Funeral Service 1399 Luisa Street, Santa Fe, NM 87505 (505)984-8600 Please sign our guestbook online at

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Published in Santa Fe New Mexican on Mar. 1, 2012.
Memories & Condolences
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43 entries
April 6, 2012
I was thinking of Don today...What a wonderful uncle and just a good guy. We were all blessed to have him in our lives.
Randall Dossett
March 11, 2012
My condolences to Mrs. Casados and all the family of Mr.Don Casados Jr. Very saddened by his passing. I met Mr. Casados by delivering his daily mail. I was impressed by his genuine personality he displayed, ranks at the top of society. The impression he made on me will always be remembered. I sincerely enjoyed and will miss our conversations. Take Care..
Bobby Jenks
March 6, 2012
To My Family,
Grandma, You were Grandads queen. He truly loved and adored you with all his heart!

Dad, Grandad loved you and would tell me every weekend how much you did for him and Grandma. He was proud of you and you did a GREAT JOB caring for him!

Darren, Grandad loved you and called you his "hito".

Brandon, Grandad thought the world of you and was so very proud of you.

Marla, Grandad never forgot you; he loved you.

To the Great Grandkids, Grandad lived for his grandkids and loved each and every one of you with all his heart! He was proud of each of you and always wished the best for all of you! Keep Grandad in your memories!

Grandad, You were truly the best person in my life! I loved and adored you with all my heart! I will miss and think of you every day, and until we meet again, please be the angel on my shoulder.
Love Always, Melissa
Melissa Casados
March 5, 2012
As a son of an 87th Infantry Division soldier (345th Inf Rgt), I am saddened to hear of the passing of this great soldier and I am truly sorry for your loss. Your husband, father, grandfather was so influential in being part of the "Greatest Generation" who gave so much so that we can be who we are today.

Today, I salute you sir - Don R. Casados, Jr. - may you rest in peace alongside my father and the other great men of the 87th "Golden Acorn" Division.
Dan Driscoll
March 4, 2012
Please accept my condolences. Mr. Casados was instrumental in helping me through a personal crisis at Mid-High. I would certainly have been suspended had he not intervened. I will always be grateful for his support and guidance. He was a good man and a wonderful educator.
Rick Berardinelli
March 3, 2012
I am sad about the passing of Don. My heart aches along with family. Don was a big influence on my life. He taught me how to play baseball, have fun and also to win. He also helped me and many others to excel in academics. I will never forget him. He was a legend in my life, and especially to the boys who grew up in the Casa Alegre housing addition.

May the Lord be with the entire family during this grieving period and always. Don's earthly problems are over. He was truly a great man, and he will be missed by all. I thank God that I was able to be influenced by this man. Larry Byrd (Ft. Mill, SC)
Larry Byrd
March 3, 2012
My thoughts and prayers are with the family. Mr. Casados was an exceptional teacher that made everyone feel special. As I read his memorial I learned so much about him and what made him the man that is so deserving of respect and admiration.
I was blessed to have known him .
Becky Tapia Goller class of 1960
March 3, 2012
Maria and I send you Dennis, your Mom and the entire Casados family our condolences. Your dad lived an extraordinary life who touched many lives in a positive way. One cannot add to what has already been said about about him (honor student, leader, educator, mentor). I have vivid and fond memories of your Dad: being caring and supportive of you throughout your athletic career, attending all your games, and giving me and others rides home in the 1951 black Chevy after DV Jr. High bb practice. Maria and I could not thank him enough for helping her get a job in Las Cruces and, writing for me, letters of recommendation to help me get into post-graduate school.

Your Dad appeared to be serious, confident, reserved, and yet an unassuming person. I can only believe it was his upbringing and early experiences in life. He was and is what Tom Brokow described as one of the "Greatest Generation": a young boy and man from northern New Mexico who at age 20 was off to Europe fighting the Nazis under unbearable weather, and then to return home and have a genuine impact on the community and people.

May you, your Mom and all the family cherish his life and the wonderful memories he left you.

Manuel and Maria Lopez, Las Cruces,NM
Manuel & Maria Lopez
March 3, 2012
Melissa and family sorry to hear of your grandfather may he rest in peace

lela and family
March 2, 2012
My heart goes out to the Casados Family, my thoughts and prayers are with all of you.
Rosemarie Quintana & Crystal Martinez
Rosemarie Quintana
March 2, 2012
Our deepest sympathies to the entire Casados family. Mr. Casados was such a great influence, that he remained one of the educators I have remembered througout my adult life. His passing saddens many of us. Jo Ann Tapia Eastham and family...Santa Fe
March 2, 2012
My family sends condolences to Dennis and family, Your father was a great influence on many at SFHS.
Steve Fowler
March 2, 2012
Our deep condolences to the Casados family. He was deeply respected as a person as well as a school administrator. He was a mentor to me at SFHS. He will be truly missed.
Milton Sternberg
March 2, 2012
To the Casados Family, may the peace that comes from the memories of love shared comfort you now and in the days ahead and take comfort in knowing an Angel is watching over you.

From daughter of Alfredo (Freddie) L. & Margaret Martinez - Kathy Garcia
March 1, 2012
My deepest and sincerest sympathy to the Casados family during this time of loss. Mr. Casados was a rare and unique man. He provided solid, sound and heartfelt counsel and guidance as an educator and administrator. I thank him for his dedication and devotion to our community of Santa Fe and to educating and guiding generations of students. God's bless you.
Juan Rios
March 1, 2012
Deepest sympathy to Mr. Casados' family. He was Vice-Prinicipal when I attended Santa Fe High. He was professional and a firm leader. He was always kind to me. God bless you all.
Mona Varela
March 1, 2012
To the Casados family and friends. Our thoughts and prayers are with you-all at this time. He really was a Great teather and Mentor.
The Guillen Family from Las Vegas, Nevada
CLASS 0F 1974
March 1, 2012
My deepest condolances to the Casados family. Mr. Don Casados Jr. was a fine man and a dedicated educator who had a positive influence on my life and the lives of tens of thousands of students.
Rebecca Madrid, SFHS, Class of 1980
Rebecca Madrid
March 1, 2012
To the entire Casados' family our deepest
condolences and to you my dear friend Dennis in this time of sorrow for the loss of your father, may he rest in peace. We will keep you in our prayers.
Sonny&Jessie Cordova
March 1, 2012
I deem it a great honor to have worked along side Don at both Mid Hifh and Santa Fe High School. He was the finest administrator and friend I have known. During my 40 year career as counselor I tried to emulate many of the fine attributes modeled to me by Don. I cherish the many years I called him my true friend. I pray Bata, Dennis and his family find peace in the memories of his blessed life.
Ron Wegelin
March 1, 2012
To the Casados Family my deepest condolences. I taught at SF High School and Don was a true professional and friend. My prayers are with you.
Alfredo Esquibel
March 1, 2012
Dennis--May the Lord Bless and keep You and Your family during this difficult time...My condolences.
Bryan Ashbaugh
March 1, 2012
Don Casados was a true professional in every a coach, classroom teacher, and administrator. He certainly was a positive influence on me, my brother, and sisters.
Pete Porter
March 1, 2012
To the Casados Family; My prayers are with your family during this time; God Bless the entire Casados family. With my deepest condolences.

Ed Saiz,Auburn, Calif. SFHS class of 1960
March 1, 2012

I was fortunate to have Mr. Casadas as my career counselor when I attended Santa Fe High School. He helped me choose a great college and career I've have often thank him in my prayers over these many years. My prayers are with his family and friends.
Pam Brashears
Pam Brashears
March 1, 2012
My condolences to the Casdados family on the passing of Mr. Casados
Ronald Trujillo
March 1, 2012
Dear Casados Family,
We are truly sorry for your loss. Our thought's and prayer's are with you and your family's at this time of sorrow.
Robert,Deb& Keaton Rodriguez
Deb Rodriguez
March 1, 2012
My sincerest condolensces to the Casados Family. Coach Casados was my coach in Football and Basketball back in 1955-56 at Leah Harvey Jr. High School and served as a mentor for me. My brother Tommy and I played for him and remember him as a very strong willed person and very strict disciplinarian who cared strongly for his players. On behalf of my brother (who now lives in Costa Rica) our thoughts and prayers are with you.

Mike Lucero, SFHS Class of 1960
Mike Lucero
March 1, 2012
It was a pleasure and privilege to have known and worked with Don. Our prayers and sympathy, Carlos and Connie Castillo
March 1, 2012
Dear Casados Family,
My thoughts and prayers go out to your family in your time of sorrow. Mr. Casados was a wonderful person. I am truly sorry for your loss.
Sonya Miera
March 1, 2012
The Casados Family,
I had the privilege and honor of working for both father and son with the SFPS. My deepest sympathy on your loss.
Eleanor Montoya
March 1, 2012
You are in my thoughts,We thought very highly of Don Casados. Always, Dru Casados & Schmitt family.
March 1, 2012
Darren, Jolene and family.
My thoughts and prayers go out to you in your time of sorrow.
Yvonne Babcock
March 1, 2012
God speed, Mr. Casados May you rest in peace. God Bless you Dennis, and all your family.
Bill Morris
March 1, 2012
My thoughts and prayers are with the Casados family for their profound loss. Don was a mentor and role model to many, including myself,and will be dearly missed. May he rest in the Lord's peace.
Walter K. Lopez
March 1, 2012
I'm sorry for your loss Dennis, your Dad was a massive influence on myself and a lot of kids growing up in Casa Alegre in the 50's and 60's. He and Julian Noedel, Reynaldo Torres, Jesse Urban, my Father and others were the driving force in getting Padre Galli to let them build a baseball diamond on Church property. That was the beginning of the Osage Boys against the Byrd Brothers and the Casados brothers, great memories your Father helped to facilitate. Chin Up my old friend.
Arturo Saiz
March 1, 2012
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Suzanne Sena
March 1, 2012
I worked with Don as a secretary when he was assitant principal and principal at Santa Fe High. He was always caring and thoughtful. He would give me advice and kept me grounded when the pressure of being a working women would take over. He treated my family like we were an extension of his family. My mother Esther Serna Baca grew up in the same neighborhood. She was four years older than him. Don told me that when he was young he had a crush on her and that he loved it when she called him "apple dumpling." We all would laugh when we would remember that story. I lost a true friend.

My condolences to you Dennis, your mom and family.
Michelle Baca Montano
March 1, 2012
Many blessings to the Casados family as you celebrate the life of one of the most inspiring and caring men. His passion as an exemplary educator was absolutely extraordinary. May peace and grace be with you. John 14:27
Stephanie Belmore
March 1, 2012
Our prayers and thoughts are with you and the family. We pray that you have peace in your heart. We are so sorry. Love the McCloud Family, Jack, JW, Kathy and AMy
March 1, 2012
Katherine and Dennis
Your husband and father had a great deal to do with me becoming the person I am today. Have very fond memories of all he did to help a "lost" high school student. He will be missed.
Joe Parker
March 1, 2012
My deepest sympathy to the Casados family
Michael Vialpando
Phoenix AZ
February 29, 2012
My dearest and deepest condolences!
Virginia Vigil
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