Updated: Eva Rafaela Esquerra
Eva Rafaela Esquerra of Kingman peacefully passed away at the Kingman Regional Medical Center on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2010, at the age of 92. She was born July 3, 1917, in Kingman to Cristobal N. and Louisa V. Torres. Eva married Raymond Badilla Esquerra of Parker on Oct. 29, 1934, at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Kingman.
She was preceded in death by her dear husband, Raymond; beloved children, Raymond Jr., Mary Louise, Rita and Regina Lozoya; her siblings, John and Sergio Torres; and also Bertha Alvarado.
As a young wife, Eva placed here family on high priority. Her husband Raymond was a self-employed contractor; she managed all financial matters. Eva was a well-known and gifted seamstress in the community. Her talent supplemented the family income.
As a mother with children at St. Mary's School, her talent and creativity produced many of the costumes for the school plays. She became very active in the parent-teacher group. Over the years she consistently held various leadership positions and was a key leader in fundraising for the school.
The Esquerra home was a second home to many children in the community, friends of their children.
Eva's talent for organizing blossomed. In time she became more actively involved at St. Mary's Church. She would always think of ways to offer more of herself. For many years she held the offices of president, secretary and treasurer of the Parish Council, the Legion of Mary, the Altar Society, and was an active member of the Belles. She taught religious education for 30 years, was eucharistic minister for 20 years and for many years was a member of the church choir.
In the 1970s, she was asked by the pastor to be the receptionist at the rectory; to her surprise, she became gainfully employed! She retired 10 years later from being the office manager and bookkeeper for the parish.
Eva and Ray were pioneers of Kingman. In her later years, Eva was a volunteer with the Daughters of the Pioneers.
Eva is survived by her daughters, Sister Rosalie Arcelia, Rebecca Virginia and Rachel Teresa (Henry) Stapleton; and her sons, Roger William (Suzanne), Dr. Roland Frederick, Ph.D. (Barbara), Ronald John, Richard Anthony, Robert David (Sheri) and Randolph Clement. She is also survived by 34 grandchildren, 35 great-grandchildren, five great-great-grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Viewing will be from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 12, at Sutton Memorial Funeral Home, 1701 Sycamore Ave. The service will be at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 13, at St. Mary's Catholic Church, 302 E. Spring St. and burial will be at Mountain View Cemetery, 1301 Stockton Hill Road.