Deaths and funerals (05/15/14)


George J. Boyle
George J. Boyle, age 86, a resident of Belen since 1995, passed away on Sunday, May 11.
He served in the Pacific while in the Navy during WWII. He was an accountant for many years with Continental Can Co., and he owned businesses in Colorado. He was an active member of the Friends of the Belen Library.
He is survived by his cherished wife, Bernice; daughter, Patricia Hurst; son-in-law, John Hurst, all of Belen; and his brother, Carl Boyle, of Johnstown, N.Y.
A private cremation was entrusted to the Noblin Funeral Service Belen Chapel. Memorial services are pending and will be announced at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to The Friends of the Belen Library, the New Mexico Center for Nursing Excellence or you favorite charity in George’s name.
Arrangements are being handled by the caring professionals at the Noblin Funeral Service Belen Chapel, 418 W. Reinken Ave., 864-4448, where an online guest register is available at

Rita Lopez
Rita Lopez passed away on Mother’s Day, Sunday, May 11, at Gentiva Hospice in Albuquerque following a short illness. She would have been 91 next week.
Rita was born in Belen on May 18, 1923, to the late Antimo and Concepción Hidalgo Ulibarri. At a very young age, her family, including her younger sister, Paulette, moved to Torrington, Wyo., where she graduated from Torrington High in 1941.
She met her husband-to-be, Manuel Lopez, right after WWII as he was fulfilling a promise to his mother, Aurelia Lopez, to stop on his way home to visit her close friend, Concepción Ulibarri. They fell in love and were married in Torrington shortly thereafter.
Manuel started a business in Belen; Rita was a practicing beautician for a short while until she decided to stay home to raise her children. Once the children were grown and Manuel retired from his business, Rita and Manuel moved to Grants, where they remained until returning to their home in Adelino in the late ’70s.
Manuel grew chile and alfalfa on their two-acre parcel until his death in 1989. Rita was well known for her great sewing and baking skills, winning blue ribbons for her cookies at the State Fair. Rita eventually moved to Albuquerque to be near her two daughters.
She lived at Encino Terrace until going into the hospital in late April, followed by a brief stay at Gentiva Hospice, where she remained until her passing on Sunday.
Rita is survived by her three children, Concepción “Concha” Lopez-Cherry and husband, Ned Cherry, Clarence Lopez and wife, Nancy Blackney-Lopez, and Carleen Lopez; as well as grandchildren, Gabriel Harrington and Cristina Lopez-Cherry and Ethan and Estevan Blackney-Lopez; great-grandchildren, Hazel Mae Korce and Summer Corbin-Lopez; as well as numerous loving nieces and nephews, who remember her fondly for her kind and generous spirit. Rita is also survived by her sister, Paulette Lopez; sisters-in-law, Emilia Baca, Sessy Lopez and Onecima Duran; and brother-in-law, Tane Lopez.
All services will be held at Our Lady of Belen Catholic Church, beginning with a viewing at 8:30 a.m.,  Friday, May 16, with a Rosary to be recited at 9:30 a.m. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m. with Father Stephen Schultz presiding. Interment will take place at the Santa Fe National Cemetery at 9 a.m., Monday, May 19.
Per Rita’s wishes, Pallbearers will be Gabriel Harrington, Cristina Lopez-Cherry, Ethan Blackney-Lopez, Estevan Blackney-Lopez, Pearl Aune and Frank Johnson. Honorary pallbearers will be Cynthia Bailey, Judith “Jude” Edwards, Debbie Lopez, Gloria Miers, Dolores Peralta and Elizabeth Olguin.
The Lopez family would like to express their appreciation for the excellent care that Rita received over the past week from the Gentiva doctors, nurses and techs. We are also grateful for Rita’s faithful caretakers, Margaret Morrison and Lorie Armijo.
Sign Rita’s online tribute at Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main Street, Belen.