Deaths and funerals (05/09/12)


Johnny Archie Baker
Johnny Archie Baker, a resident of Los Lunas, went to be with the Lord Sunday, May 6, at the age of 50. Johnny was born April 21, 1962, in Belen, where he grew up.
Johnny married the love of his life, Vicky Johnson Baker, July 16, 1983. The two of them made their home in Los Lunas, where they raised their three sons.
Johnny was a fun loving, easy going and family-oriented man. He always liked to tell a good joke. Johnny was a man of great faith and loved the Lord with all his heart.
He had many pastimes which included reconnecting with high school friends and family on Facebook, collecting antiques and spending weekends at his cabin in the Sherwood Forest.
He is loved and will be missed by all who knew and were touched by him.
Johnny is preceded in death by his brother, William “Bill” Baker; his mother, Orpha June Baker; and father-in-law, Gary Johnson.
He is survived by his wife of 28 years, Vicky Baker; sons Billy, Andy and Eric Baker of Los Lunas; two grandsons, Hunter and Wyatt Baker; his father, Archie Baker of Belen; brothers, Galen Baker and wife, Hai, of Belen, Gary Baker and wife, Lucy, of Belen, Tony Baker and wife, Joyce, of Rio Rancho, Ronnie Baker and wife, Shari, of Belen; mother-in-law, Darlene Johnson of Belen; brother-in-law, Ricky Johnson; brother-in-law, Rocky Johnson and wife, Peggy; sister-in-law, Shelly Detrick and husband, Scott, all of Los Lunas; many nieces, nephews, extended family and friends.
Randy Earwood will officiate services in honor of Johnny Baker at 9 a.m., Thursday, May 10, at Noblin Funeral Service Belen Chapel, 418 W. Reinken Ave., 864-4448, where an online guest register is available at
The family will receive friends at 8:30 a.m., and interment will follow services at Terrace Grove Cemetery.

Caroline Benefield
Caroline Benefield, age 85, a resident of Albuquerque, passed away on May 3.
Caroline is preceded in death by her loving husband, Joe G. Benefield. She is survived by her children, Margie Lewis and husband, Clark, Carolyn Binkley and husband, George, Glen Benefield and wife, Karla, Joe Benefield and wife, Mary Anne, Connie Capps and husband, Ron, Bob Benefield and wife, Kathy, Pam Marino and husband, Richard; as well as her wonderful grand and great-grand children.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations to the Animal Humane Society.
A graveside service at Terrace Grove Cemetery was held Tuesday, May 8, with a reception following.
Arrangements were handled by the caring professionals at Noblin Funeral Service Los Lunas Chapel, 2211-D Main St., 866-9992, where an online guest register is available at

Ramona Lopez
Ramona Lopez, age 97, a resident of Bernardo (San Francisco), N.M., passed away on Sunday, May 6.
She was a member of Our Lady of Sorrows Parish.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Ramon Lopez; and two sons, Benny and Elusim Lopez. Ramona is survived by her 12 loving children; 39 grandchildren; 102 great-grandchildren; six great-great-grandchildren; sister, Elfida Benavidez; and brother, Avilio Silva. She is also survived by many loving nieces, nephew and friends.
All services will be held at the San Antonio Catholic Church, beginning with a viewing and Rosary on Tuesday, May 8. A final visitation will be held at 10 a.m., Wednesday, May 9, with a Funeral Mass to be celebrated at 10:30 a.m. Interment will follow at the Abeytas Catholic Cemetery.
Pallbearers will be James Baca, Benny Jr., Samuel and Ricardo Lopez, Ross Pino and Luciano Lopez.
Ramona’s family would like to give a special thank you to Ambercare for the care and love you gave to her.
Sign Ramona’s online register book at Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Leonard “Len” Strawderman
Leonard “Len” Strawderman, age 81, a resident of Los Lunas, passed away on Sunday, May 6.
Len was born in Nevada, Mo. Growing up in Wichita, Kan., Len developed a life-long love of airplanes and flying. He served four years in the Air Force, and for part of that time, was stationed on Iwo Jima.
Len studied engineering at University of Wichita. Len did design work for Coleman Company in Wichita.
He moved his family to Albuquerque in 1958 and began work at Sandia Corporation. After retirement from Sandia, he also worked for the Dale Bellamah Corporation in planning and design and the University of New Mexico Engineering Department.
Through the years, Len was active in all aspects of the real estate business, as a realtor, broker, contractor and drafter. He worked from home doing house plans for local builders up to his 80th birthday.
In his personal life, Len married Patricia Goben in 1953. Pat and Len had a son, Gary Strawderman in 1958. Len passed his love of flying on to Gary, who is a pilot and FAA controller.
Len married Carol Wright on Jan. 1, 1978. After a short stint in Lubbock, where Carol taught at Texas Tech, they returned to New Mexico. Len and Carol designed and built their dream house in Los Lunas.
Len and Carol were members of Peralta Methodist Church. He loved dogs and duck hunting. When his favorite dog, Zack, was too old to hunt, Len hung up his shotgun as well.
Len enjoyed motorcycles and recently had a Honda Goldwing modified into a trike. Only three years ago, he and Gary rode to Washington state and back. He was active in the Goldwing Road Riders Association.
Recently Len was delighted by the arrival of grand-baby, Gavin.
He was preceded in death by his parents; and beloved wife of 27 years, Carol Strawderman. Len is survived by his son, Gary; grandson, Gavin Lee; two stepdaughters, Barbara Wright and Rebecca Beeson and husband, Tom; two grandchildren, Noah and Cheyanna; stepson, David Wright and wife, Jane; and friend, Sallie Van Curan, who has been a great comfort to Len since Carol’s passing.
The family request that donations be made to
All services will be held at Peralta Memorial United Methodist Church on Thursday, May 10, beginning with a visitation at 10:30 a.m. with a funeral service at 11 a.m. Interment will follow at Terrace Grove Cemetery.
Sign Leonard’s online register book at Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Rose Marie Torres
Rose Marie Torres passed away unexpectedly on Thursday in Colorado Springs, Colo.
She is preceded in death by her father, John Wade Steele; and is survived by her mother, VJ “Goldie” Kayser; sister, Donna Grice and husband, James; son, Cody Mathews and wife, Yvette; daughter, Shannon Gurule and Thomas Ortega; and her grandchildren, Cody Jr., Cassaundra, Cheyenne, Joelle and Autumn.
A memorial service is set for 11 a.m., Saturday, May 12, at the Christian Center on Main Street in Mountainair.