Leobardo “Leo” Rodriguez Sr., 98, passed away peacefully on Feb. 7 at Edinburg Regional Medical Center surrounded by his family. He was born in Falfurrias, Texas, on Nov. 21, 1911, to Cenobio and Petra Perez Rodriguez and spent his early childhood in Ciudad Mier, Tamaulipas, Mexico.
Mr. Rodriguez was a long time resident of Edinburg, having moved there from McAllen in 1946. He had been retired for over 20 years after a long and successful career as a life insurance general agent. In his early years, he had also been a musician during the “Big Band” era when he directed his own orchestra. He later entered the theater entertainment business and was instrumental in bringing many celebrities from Mexico and other major cities in the U.S. to the teatro “El Azteca” in McAllen.
He was a wonderful husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather who never met a stranger. He loved people and enjoyed helping others, especially those not able to help themselves. Mr. Rodriguez was always prompt to help his community and his church, and served in the Knights of Columbus since 1963. As a life member of the Bishop Garriga 4th Degree Assembly #1111, he served the order in several official duties. He was also a life member of the Edinburg Council #5598.
Mr. Rodriguez was known throughout the Rio Grande Valley and will be missed by many of his extended family and friends. He is survived by his devoted daughters, Margot (Joe) Perez, Melba (Richard) Garza, and Maxine (Derek) Segal; loving sons, Leobardo Jr. (Eloisa) and Leonel L. (Dee Dee) Rodriguez; 12 grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; his brother, Pablo Adan (Rosemarie) Rodriguez; sisters Maria Senorina (Teofilo) Treviño, Minerva (Rene Sr.) Sandoval, Maria del Rosario (Ruben) Gonzalez; and numerous nieces and nephews.Mr. Rodriguez was preceded in death by his parents, Cenobio and Petra Perez Rodriguez; the love of his life, Juanita Molina Rodriguez, his wife of 59 years; brothers Baldemar, Alejandro and Noe Rodriguez; and sisters Amparo (Onesimo) Treviño, Evangelina (Julian) Avila and Beatriz (Gilberto) Moody.Visitation and rosary were held on Feb. 11 at Ceballos-Diaz Funeral Home in Edinburg. Funeral mass was celebrated on Friday, Feb. 12 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Edinburg. Burial followed at Highland Memorial Park in Weslaco.
Having the distinguished honor of serving as pallbearers are Robert Castro, Robert Rodriguez, Richard Garza, Richard Rodriguez, Derek Segal and Derek Rodriguez. Honorary pallbearers are Joe Perez Sr. and Steven Garza and members of the 4th Degree Knights of Columbus.