Aug. 10, 1949 – March 20, 2021
Martha Chavez Lepez, passed away on March 20, 2021, at Blue Mountain Hospital in John Day, Oregon, at the age of 71. She was born on Aug. 10, 1949, in Coalcoman, Michoacan, Mexico. She married Jesus Lepez, her husband of 56 years, on May 10, 1964. The couple immigrated to the United States in pursuit of a better life with their four children in tow in 1979. They lived in Madras, Oregon, for a short period before settling permanently in Kimberly, Oregon, in 1980. She worked for Thomas Orchards for 25-plus years.
She was not only the matriarch of her family, but the very heart and soul of it. She found great joy in cooking meals for others, welcoming them into her home whether they were family, friends or strangers. Anyone who knew Martha probably has a memory of having a meal at her home on at least one occasion. Her cooking was traditional and authentic; recipes she had been taught by her mother and then passed on to her daughters and granddaughters — as is fitting in Mexican culture.
Martha’s greatest joys in life were her family, friends and spending time in her flower garden. After retirement, she spent time tending her extensive flowerbeds and various vegetable plants; she viewed this work as a blessing.
Martha is survived by her husband, Jesus; their children, David, Jesse, Maria and Angie; 11 grandchildren, Christian, Bianca, Zavier, Cass, McKensie, Maya, Mattaya, Katie, Bailey, Kayla and Marcos; and four great-grandchildren, Ellie, Evie, Emma and Finn.
A tribute from her family: “She will be missed beyond measure. We don’t say goodbye to her, but instead, we live with the knowledge we will see her again one day. It is comforting to know she was loved by so many.”