Smith Funeral Home

128 East 5Th Street, Flatonia, TX


Nicolas "Nick" A. Esparza

September 10, 1932February 17, 2019
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Nicolas (Nick) A. Esparza, age 86 of Waelder, Texas passed away February 17, 2019 in Flatonia, Texas.

He was born September 10, 1932 to Carlos and Saturnina Almarez Esparza in Waelder, Texas.

He was an employee working in the parts department at Lawrence Marshall Chevrolet for 10 years, Floyd-Walker Chevrolet for 23 years, and a Caretaker for Waelder Community Cemetery for 20+ years. He was also a member of St. Patrick Catholic Church.

Nicolas is survived by his wife Hortensia Esparza of Waelder, sons Pete Esparza Sr. and wife Mary of Waelder and Nicolas Esparza Jr. of Montgomery, daughters Senovia Estrada and husband Joe of Flatonia, Sylvia Venable and husband Mike of Texarkana, and Teresa Rodriguez of Flatonia, brother Crespin Esparza of Houston, sisters Jane Schilhab of Victoria, Sarah Ramirez, Louisa Estrada, and Rosa Melchor of Waelder, fourteen grandchildren, and fourteen great-grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his parents, daughter Teresita Esparza, six brothers, and two sisters.

Visitation is scheduled for 10:00am Wednesday, February 20, 2019 with Rosary following at 7:00pm at the Smith Funeral Home Chapel in Flatonia. Funeral Mass will take place 9:30am Thursday, February 21, 2019 at St. Patrick Catholic Church with Father Mike Pienemann officiating. Burial will follow at the Waelder Community Cemetery.


  • Carlos Esparza, Father (deceased)
  • Saturnina Almaraz Esparza, Mother (deceased)
  • Crespin Esparza, Brother
  • Sarah Ramirez, Sister
  • Louisa Estrada, Sister
  • Rosa Melchor, Sister
  • Jane Schilhab, Sister
  • Hortensia Gutierrez Esparza, Wife
  • Pete Esparza Sr., Son
  • Mary Esparza, Daughter-in-law
  • Nicolas Esparza Jr., Son
  • Teresita Esparza, Daughter (deceased)
  • Senovia Estrada, Daughter
  • Joe Estrada, Son-in-law
  • Sylvia Venable, Daughter
  • Mike Venable, Son-in-law
  • Teresa Rodriguez, Daughter
  • Mr. Esparza also leaves behind fourteen grandchildren and fourteen great-grandchildren to cherish his memory.


  • Visitation Wednesday, February 20, 2019
  • Rosary Wednesday, February 20, 2019
  • Funeral Mass Thursday, February 21, 2019
  • Burial Thursday, February 21, 2019


Nicolas "Nick" A. Esparza

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When someone is identified as a natural leader, certain images come to mind. First thoughts are of a no-nonsense, tough-minded, dedicated and disciplined person. This description accurately fits Nicolas A. Esparza who was indeed a born manager. He will be remembered as being highly organized, practical and realistic. He was a person who always carried a strong sense of duty with him throughout his life. Possessed with traditional “old school” morals, Nick was an individual who clearly communicated to those around him just who he was and what he was all about. Everyone acquainted with Nick knew him as a well-respected man who was a stable force in his community.

Nick was born on September 10, 1932 at home by a mid-wife in Waelder, Texas. His parents were Carlos and Saturnina Esparza. Nick was raised in Waelder, Texas. Even as a youngster, Nick learned to be objective and decisive. His faith in the principles of authority and dependability was something that he carried with him throughout his life.

As a young boy, Nick was able to put his natural abilities to work. He was a bit like the sergeant of the family, helping to make sure that the others did what they should do and that they avoided those things they weren’t supposed to. In other words, he liked to organize and direct. Nick was raised with thirteen siblings. He had seven brothers and six sisters Natividad, Aurelio, Mauro, Frank, Lazaro, Cipriana, Rosa, Louisa, Jane, Anselmo, Sara, Crespin, and Lusiano. Nick had an inborn appreciation for the order in the family, allowing for the oldest members to be the most respected and to take on the most responsibility. For Nick, this was a natural order of life, one he gladly embraced.

Nick’s matter-of-fact attitude about most things was developed during his childhood. As a young boy, Nick enjoyed being part of teams, and organizations and groups of other kids who shared similar interests. Nick took part in baseball. In his spare time he liked hunting and fishing. "Nick’s memorable achievements included.

Nick was sociable and approachable. Because he was always so straightforward in how he approached relationships, friends and family knew that what they saw was always what they got. He enjoyed the camaraderie of being with a group of friends. When Nick was a member of a group, his interaction worked to keep the others grounded. He wasn’t afraid to confront his friends and, when necessary, he challenged them to stick to the task at hand. Those close to Nick came to expect his high standards of performance. While growing up, some of his best friends were Thomas Tovar, Jose Tovar, Joe Gomez, Joe Eureste, and Manuel Ramirez. Later in life, he became friends with Ernesto Almaraz, Paul Quintero Sr., Ricardo Cedillo, and Salvador Robeldo.

An objective and conscientious individual, Nick reveled in the security of his family. On May 15, 1955 Nick exchanged wedding vows with Hortensia Gutierrez at the St. Patrick Catholic Church of Waelder, Texas. One of Nick’s most endearing qualities was his uncanny ability to remember important dates and anniversaries, and his unending enthusiasm for organizing a celebration for his family and friends.

Nick was ever watchful of his children. He worried about them and was deeply concerned for their development as they grew up. He maintained a firm hand in their upbringing. Nick would give his stamp of approval to their requests, as long as he could see how they might benefit. He also had the ability to enforce the rules as needed to ensure that his children were properly raised. Nick was blessed with six children, Pedro, Senovia, Sylvia, Teresa, Nicolas, and Teresita (deceased). They were also blessed with 14 grandchildren, Chris, Regina, Pedro Jr., Ricky, Thomas, Laura, Scott, Michael Lou (deceased), Cory, Daniel Jr., Vincent, Abigail, Leah, Robert, and Joseph.

Being a hard worker who praised efficiency, Nick was always striving to make improvements where they were necessary. He was able to analyze situations and problems, keeping everything and everyone on track. An excellent project supervisor, Nick was a person who could quickly make decisions based on the information available. He worked cooperatively and expected the same from his colleagues. In both his personal and professional environments, Nick upheld his standards. His primary occupation was in the parts department. He was employed for Floyd Walker Chevrolet for 23 years and Lawrence Marshall Chevrolet for 10 years. Nick was a team player who certainly lived out the motto of “give me a job, and I will get it done.”

Nick approached his leisure time in the same manner that he approached his life. A person who enjoyed being neat and orderly and one who understood the nature of things, he appreciated the hours he was able to devote to his various hobbies. His favorite pursuits were raising hogs, hunting, fishing, playing pool, playing baseball, and bingo. But most of all his last 6 years of his life, he loved to paint while in the nursing home. Nick was content to enjoy his favorite pastimes alone but was also willing to share his interests with others.

Throughout Nick’s later years, he was an active member of the church choir.

A civic-minded person, Nick was usually ready to jump in and help with community activities. He was the type of person who could masterfully organize events and projects and then see to it that they were run in an efficient and timely manner. Nick was a member of several community groups, including serving on committees for the Waelder Community Cemetery. Politically, Nick was. During these years, Nick applied his analytical intellect to problem solving and so was an asset on most committees.

Faith was important to Nick. He held high moral standards and was worried about the moral decay he saw around him. For that reason he held deep spiritual beliefs that he was willing to share. He was a member St. Patrick Catholic Church in Waelder for 86 years. During that time, he was in the church choir.

When it came time to travel or take a vacation, Nick used his scheduling expertise to make sure everyone and everything was ready to go. That also meant that he made certain no single person was overworked in putting the trip together. Nick had a knack for making sure that everyone who was involved had their specific tasks and that those tasks were completed. Favorite vacations included traveling to Mexico with other couples.

Nick was a lover of animals and cherished his pets. One of "Nick’s favorites was Blackie, a dog. They were best friends for 10 years.

When Nick’s retirement finally arrived in 1987, he was well prepared. He used his critical evaluation skills to make sure that every detail had been preplanned and attended to. His new life involved staying in Waelder, Texas. In retirement, he found new pleasure in playing bingo. In many ways, Nick loved retirement. It provided him with the opportunity to catch up with his friends, attend functions and group outings, and tackle new interesting activities.

Nick passed away on February 17, 2019 at Oak Manor Nursing Home in Flatonia, Texas. Nick fought heart problems with his first attack at the age of 55 and his second at the age of 65 and then sudden cardiac arrest in 2007, his heart failed slowly and battled on till the age of 86. He is survived by his wife and five children. Services were held at St. Patrick Catholic Church in Waelder, Texas. Nick was laid to rest in Waelder, Community Cemetery in Waelder, Texas.

All who knew him would agree that Nick was a pillar of the community. He lived his life with his feet firmly on the ground. He had a strong work ethic, was pragmatic in his thoughts and acts, and constantly sought the means for self-improvement. He was willing to share his ideas and knowledge for the benefit of others, so that they could accomplish more in their lives. Nicolas A. Esparza did his best to ensure that his family, friends, loved ones, co-workers, and everyone whose life he touched was given the chance to become a better person.