Ricardo Alberto Avila
December 2, 1960 – November 15, 2018
Ricardo A. Avila December 2, 1960 to November 16, 2018 Resident of Houston
On November 16, 2018, our Father in heaven welcomed home one of his most humble albeit dedicated servants, Ricardo A. Avila. Ricardo was dedicated to help everyone around him, and those who knew him will remember him for his richness of spirit and his absolute belief that helping others was the best way to know and serve God. This belief was born and tempered in El Paso, Texas where Ricardo was born and raised.
A graduate of Cathedral High School in 1979, he attended St. Mary’s University for a year where he decided that he wasn’t ready for college. Instead he became a renowned hair stylist whose talents graced several magazines in Houston and New York. While he found this career rewarding, he was always looking for ways to help others and not quite sure if he was doing enough in that regard. His opportunity to change that came in 1991 when he met his partner, and devout Catholic, Robert Campbell, M.D. In Robert Campbell, he found a person with zeal to help make this world better for those in great need, such as helping the poor in Guatemala and India who had minimal medical resources, no sanitation or clean water or poor educational prospects. As part of this humanitarian effort, Ricardo met the Dalai Lama, in exile in India at the time, and Mother Teresa in New Delhi. In 1995, when Robert Campbell died, Ricardo became the director of Robert’s foundation (the Sociedad San Martin de Porres) to continue God’s work.
Inspired by his experiences and encouraged by his friends and family, Ricardo returned to college in the 1990’s to complete his education securing a BA in Spanish and a Master of Education from the University of Houston. It was then that he began one of the most rewarding periods of his life: he became a high school teacher of Spanish in Houston. There he taught up to 240+ students at a time, over six to seven classes a year over a span of 18 years; anyone who traveled with Ricardo noted that he always traveled with two pieces of luggage: one for his clothes and the other filled with papers to be graded. Ricardo was an outstanding teacher who loved his “kids.” He worked hard to help his students and they loved him for it.
At the Houston Independent School District, he achieved one of the highest records of students that passed their AP Spanish course and secured college credit. But, that wasn’t enough for Ricardo. He wanted to instill in his students the desire to try and make this world a better place for those in need: he adopted the Ronald McDonald House foundation with zeal and with his “platoons of kids,” became a regular contributor and helper to this wonderful organization and the families who relied on this organization to help sick children in need. His kids continue this work to this very day.
Ricardo was inspirational and all who knew him were the better for it, including his brothers Ernesto and Rolando, sisters-in-law, Cathy and Sara, nephews Jonathan, Alex, Ivan and Carolina and wonderful tias, tios and primos of the Avila clan who will join him one day.
A rosary and celebration of life will be held on Friday, December 7th at 7pm at Kaster Maxon and Futrell at 8817 Dyer Street in El Paso. A gravesite ceremony will be held at 10am at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Cemetery on December 8th followed by a celebration of life. In lieu of flowers, Ricardo requested a contribution instead to the Ronald McDonald House Charities (rmhc.org).
- Ernesto Avila, Brother
- Rolando Avila, Brother
- Mr Avila also leaves behind sisters-in-law Cathy and Sara, nephews, Jonathan, Alex, Ivan, and Carolina and wonderful Tias, Tios and primos.
- Visitation Friday, December 7, 2018
- Graveside Service Saturday, December 8, 2018
Ricardo Alberto Avila
December 26, 2018
I met Mr.avila when I was a sophomore he was my Spanish teacher at Reagan High school. I would love going to his class because he was a very caring and loving person.He taught me that with hard work and desire anything is possible. He was is and will forever be a role model to me. It’s sad to say that he’s gone but is safe to say that he’s in a better place and will never be forgotten .
I will always remember you Mr.avila
~Sincerely Anthony Lopez
December 18, 2018
Thinking of you my dear friend. A memory I want to share and that I will never forget, a day when I was completely broke and I had to buy some food for my girls, you came to my cubicle and gave me 40 dollars. I won't forget this act of kindness, you were an angel among us, now you are an angel in Heaven! Rest in peace Ricardo!