Jose Pete Maestas, age 82, a lifelong resident of Chili, NM passed away peacefully in his home on September 11, 2023, surrounded by his beloved family. Pete is preceded in death by his father Enrique Maestas; mother Adelina Maestas; granddaughter Krisanne Salazar; nephew Juanito Valerio; parents-in-law, Jose and Teodorita Salazar; brother-in-law, Salomon Salazar and his wife Flora; sister-in-law, Cleo Lopez and her husband, Margarito; sister-in-law, Angelina Garcia and her husband, Manuel; sister-in-law, Virginia Gonzales and her husband, Celestino; brother-in-law Floyd Prando.
Pete is survived by his wife Emily S. Maestas; children Marcella Sloan and her husband Blane; Peter Maestas; Suzanne Padilla; grand-daughters Marilyn Eggleston and husband Jonathan; Marissa Humes and husband Brice; grandsons Rubel Martinez and Nicholas Padilla; great-granddaughter Emilia Eggleston (Emily); foster sister Rosita Lozano and husband Armando and her children Henrietta, Steve, Tiana, Amanda, Marbella and Carlos; sister-in-law, Sadie Salazar and her husband, Pat; sister-in-law, Elizabeth Vigil and her husband, John; sister-in-law, Laura Prando; as well as many cousins; nieces; and nephews.
Pete was proud to have been born and raised in the beautiful Chili Valley, which he would affectionately refer to as “Paradise” to his friends and family. He was the only child of Enrique and Adelina Maestas until they brought home his foster sister Rosie. Pete always dreamed of life in a big family, so many of the friends he made from grade school and throughout his life became his family, and those friendships remained until the very end.
After more than 30 years of service, Pete retired from the Los Alamos National Lab. He decided to follow in his father’s footsteps by embarking on a new career as an independent truck driver and rancher. Pete loved farming, working with his horses, and cattle, and enjoying the company of his many four-legged friends. He loved the opportunity driving gave him to meet new people and see and learn about new parts of his home state. Pete never knew a stranger and was always ready to help anyone who needed it. He commanded respect everywhere he went. He had a strong sense of adventure and love of life. He truly lived every day to the fullest. He would look at a problem or something that needed fixing, and without any professional or skilled training, he would always find a unique solution.
Pete met his wife Emily in high school and shared 62 years of marriage. They traveled the length of North America, spanning from Canada to Mexico as well as extensive trips with friends and family throughout the United States. As a father, Pete instilled a strong work ethic and a lifelong sense of love and confidence in his children. He gave them a sense of security as he often reminded them that while he was alive, no one could ever harm them.
Pete adored his four grandchildren, Marilyn, Rubel, Nicholas, and Marissa, and his first great-granddaughter, Emilia (Emily). He was always ready to play with his grandkids, exploring together, sometimes getting into trouble and captivating them with his stories and sense of humor. Pete gave them many life lessons and created a lifetime of fond and magical memories for them.
Pete leaves behind a devastated and heartbroken family and a void in our hearts that will never be filled.
The family would like to thank all of those who visited and helped care for Pete during his final days.
Services for Pete will be held on Tuesday, September 19, 2023. A rosary will take place at Sacred Heart Catholic Church at 11:30 a.m. with a funeral mass to follow at 12 p.m. Burial will take place immediately following at the San Jose Catholic Church Cemetery in Hernandez.
Pallbearers will be Peter Maestas, Rubel Martinez III, Nicholas Padilla, Blane Sloan, Jonathan Eggleston, Brice Humes, Raul Padilla and Rubel Martinez II.
Honorary Pallbearers are Jake Romero, Cornelio Sanchez, Freddie Garcia, Arnold Padilla, James Lopez, Jose Duran, Steve Mondragon, Jake Salazar, Pat Salazar, John Vigil, Steve Valerio, Rudy Galvan, Dennis Fernandez, Joe Maestas, James Maestas, Lional Maestas, Ben Espinoza, Bob Tainter and David Tainter.
In Leiu of flowers donations can be made in Pete's name to the Carmelite Monastery, 49 Mount Carmel Road Santa Fe, NM 87505-0352
The family of Jose Pete Maestas has entrusted the care of their loved one to DeVargas Funeral Home & Crematory of the beautiful Espanola Valley. www.devargasfuneral.com 505-747-7477