OBITUARY

Mrs. Bernarda Puentes Reyes

August 20, 1923January 9, 2019
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Bernarda Puentes Reyes, age 95, passed away peacefully on January 9, 2019, comforted by her family at her side.

Bernie, as known to many, was born in Parlier, CA and married to Gusmaro Reyes for 70 years. Some of her best memories included her formative years living in Santa Maria de los Angeles, Jalisco, Mexico, before becoming a homemaker, an assembly-line worker, and a dedicated mother. She adored her eight children and their spouses, 25 grandchildren and 28 great grandchildren. She will be remembered as a woman of faith, unconditional love, and service to others. She also valued education to ensure a better quality of life for her children and community.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Gusmaro Reyes.

She is survived by her daughters Mary Helen Reyes Thompson; Ramona M. Trejo; Olivia Dominguez; Josephine Barron; Carolyn Reyes; and Mary Anita Jackmon; sons Nicholas F. Reyes and Albert G. Reyes; twenty-five grandchildren, twenty-eight great grandchildren and two great great grandchildren.

The Rosary will be held at Lisle Memorial at 7 pm on Monday, January 14, 2019.Funeral mass will be held at St. Johns Cathedral, Fresno, CA 93721 on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at 9:00 AM. Burial to follow at St. Peter's Cemetery, Fresno CA 93706.

In Lieu of Flowers, monetary contributions may be sent to the Educational and Leadership Foundation in care of the Reyes Scholarship at www.education-leadership.org or mail to ELF, 4290 E. Ashlan Ave., Fresno, CA 93726.

Bernarda Puentes Reyes: A Mother’s Legacy

In the early 1920’s, Bernarda was born in Parlier, California to Pantaleon Puentes and Paula Torres. On January 9, 2019, she passed away peacefully surrounded by her children and grandchildren. She was a strong woman of faith, love, and service. There is not a day in life that goes by without her family thanking God for her presence.

Bernarda was one of 10 children. Her family moved to Jalisco, Mexico when she was four years old. She grew up in Rancho de Las Animas en Santa Maria de Los Angeles where she described loving the outdoors as a child. She attended elementary school until the fourth grade. When Bernarda was a child, her mother would ask, “why do you regularly go with your father, riding a horse, wearing your chaps?” She would answer, “because we ride out to the countryside, sit and eat tunas” (prickly pears).

At the age of 24, Bernarda married Gusmaro Reyes on July 7, 1946 in a Catholic church in Santa Maria de Los Angeles. They journeyed together back to the United States, and for the next 11 years, they migrated and worked seasonal crops in the San Joaquin Valley. Eventually, with their vision to raise and educate their children, they settled in Fresno, California in 1960.

Bernarda’s pride and joy were her children and grandchildren. She had nine children, eight of them living. She was blessed with 25 grandchildren and 28 great grandchildren. She taught her children that they were children of God and that her role in life was to guide them. Her dream was to raise her children to be “well educated” (bien educado). In the eyes of Bernarda, to be "bien educado" meant to be respectful to everyone, follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, and be civically minded. From sunrise to sunset, she exemplified labor of love. She started her day cooking a full course hot breakfast, packing lunches and planning the day for her family of 10, even after she started her full-time work. Bernarda helped each one of her children feel they were special. All of them were her "consentidos".

As a family leader, Bernarda also taught her children the importance of civic duty—she and her husband proudly voted in every election. Bernarda participated in raising funds for scholarships and social needs since the 1960s. Foremost though, Bernarda was undiscriminating with her love and generosity, feeding and supporting those in need.

After the last of her eight children entered preschool, Bernarda started working at Buckner Sprinkler Company. She worked there for a total of 12 years, making many life long friends at the factory. Some of her friends became her "comadres".

Bernarda understood that each child needs a strong foundation to succeed and thrive in life. She always impressed upon her children and grandchildren the value of education, as she believed that an education was the best way to ensure a better quality of life for her children and community.

Bernarda demonstrated her enduring spirituality through daily prayer, providing advice and counsel to those who were blessed to call her wife, mother, sister, comadre, and amiga. Friends and family often called her so that she could pray the rosary and provide them her wholehearted support during times of need.

She will be remembered by her wise words:

-- Que vaya con Dios - Go with God

-- Sea por Dios - Its God’s way

-- Rezar a Jesus - Pray to Jesus

-- Alimenta a todos! - Feed Everyone!

-- No le digas a la gente, muestra a la gente que los amas - Don’t tell people you love them, show people you love them

--Que haiga un loco y no dos! - Let there be one mad person, and not two!

-- Dios esté contigo en tu camino - God be with you as you go your way

-- No digas malas palabras - Don’t say bad words

-- Guarda tu dinero - Save your money

-- No desperdicies - Don’t be wasteful

We thank God everyday for having been blessed with such a spiritual, giving, and loving mother. She was our guiding light and will always be admired for her sacrifice and the immensity of values she instilled in each of her children. We are better people in life because of her.

To continue her legacy, a scholarship fund was created in our parents honor—the Gusmaro and Bernarda P. Reyes Memorial Scholarship. In her honor and in lieu of flowers, monetary contributions may be sent to the Educational and Leadership Foundation in care of the Reyes Scholarship at www.education-leadership.org or mail to ELF, 4290 E. Ashlan Ave., Fresno, CA 93726.

  • FAMILY

  • Gusmaro Reyes (Deceased), Husband
  • Mary Helen Reyes Thompson, Daughter
  • Ramona M. Trejo, Daughter
  • Olivia Dominguez, Daughter
  • Josephine Barron, Daughter
  • Carolyn Reyes, Daughter
  • Mary Anita Jackmon, Daughter
  • Nicholas F. Reyes, Son
  • Albert G. Reyes, Son
  • She leaves behind twenty-four grandchildren, twenty-eight great grandchildren and two great great grandchildren to cherish her memory.
  • PALLBEARERS

  • Albert G. Reyes
  • Nicholas F. Reyes
  • Richard A. Trejo
  • Ignacio R Dominguez
  • Samuel Barron II
  • Xavier Becerra
  • Marvin K. Jackmon

Services

  • Funeral Mass Tuesday, January 15, 2019
REMEMBERING

Mrs. Bernarda Puentes Reyes

have a memory or condolence to add?

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Marvin Jackmon

January 21, 2019

I knew of Mrs. Reyes back in 1978. I finally met her 8 years ago. What I witnessed was wisdom. Over the next eight years I learned her history.

This scripture immediately comes to mind.

2 Timothy 4:7-8
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing

Chandra Nuno

January 13, 2019

At this sorrowful time, I would like to extend my deepest condolences to the loving family of Mrs. Bernarda Reyes. I am truly blessed to have known “Grandma Bernie,” as I called her. She was always happy, loving and especially ready to feed you upon visiting her. I am proud of my nickname she gave me, “Güera.” I am also thankful for her talking to me in Spanish so I could learn a second language. As a child, I would tag along with my friend, Monalisa and her mother, Ramona, after mass at St. Anthony’s to have a delicious breakfast prepared by Grandma Birney. It was then, that the Reyes and Trjeo families welcomed me with open arms to become an extended member of the “Familia.” I am thankful for one of my last visits with Grandma Birney where we smiled and hugged each other while telling each other, “¡Tu eres muy bonita y joven!” Grandma Birney was truly a beautiful person whom I adored very much and will forever have a place in my heart.
Con mucho cariño, Chandy Contreras Nuño

Marlise Aguilar

January 10, 2019

I am going to miss Tía Bernarda's beautiful smile and presence. I would compliment her all the time and she would compliment right back. I would tell her, "eres una reiña tan hermosa y preciosa Tía" because she truly was. I was told she was a great sister-in-law to my abuelita Juanita and although I was too young to witness her kindness to her, I loved and appreciated Tía Bernarda for that. Although it is sad for all who are mourning her, she is now at peace and reunited with her beloved Husband Tío Gusmaro. Both of them raised humble and very kind children who I appreciate having in my life. I love all of you so very much and sending my condolences once again.
I love you Tía Bernie!

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Biography

Bernarda Puentes Reyes: A Mother’s Legacy

In the early 1920’s, Bernarda was born in Parlier, California to Pantaleon Puentes and Paula Torres. On January 9, 2019, she passed away peacefully surrounded by her children and grandchildren. She was a strong woman of faith, love, and service. There is not a day in life that goes by without her family thanking God for her presence.

Bernarda was one of 10 children. Her family moved to Jalisco, Mexico when she was four years old. She grew up in Rancho de Las Animas en Santa Maria de Los Angeles where she described loving the outdoors as a child. She attended elementary school until the fourth grade. When Bernarda was a child, her mother would ask, “why do you regularly go with your father, riding a horse, wearing your chaps?” She would answer, “because we ride out to the countryside, sit and eat tunas” (prickly pears).

At the age of 24, Bernarda married Gusmaro Reyes on July 7, 1946 in a Catholic church in Santa Maria de Los Angeles. They journeyed together back to the United States in 1948, and for the next 11 years, they migrated and worked seasonal crops in the San Joaquin Valley. Eventually, with their vision to raise and educate their children, they settled in Fresno, California in 1960.

Bernarda’s pride and joy were her children and grandchildren. She had nine children, eight of them living. She was blessed with 25 grandchildren and 28 great grandchildren. She taught her children that they were children of God and that her role in life was to guide them. Her dream was to raise her children to be “well educated” (bien educado). In the eyes of Bernarda, to be "bien educado" meant to be respectful to everyone, follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, and be civically minded. From sunrise to sunset, she exemplified labor of love. She started her day cooking a full course hot breakfast, packing lunches and planning the day for her family of 10, even after she started her full-time work. Bernarda helped each one of her children feel they were special. All of them were her "consentidos".

As a family leader, Bernarda also taught her children the importance of civic duty—she and her husband proudly voted in every election. Bernarda participated in raising funds for scholarships and social needs since the 1960s. Foremost though, Bernarda was undiscriminating with her love and generosity, feeding and supporting those in need.

After the last of her eight children entered preschool, Bernarda started working at Buckner Sprinkler Company. She worked there for a total of 12 years, making many life long friends at the factory. Some of her friends became her "comadres".

Bernarda understood that each child needs a strong foundation to succeed and thrive in life. She always impressed upon her children and grandchildren the value of education, as she believed that an education was the best way to ensure a better quality of life for her children and community.

Bernarda demonstrated her enduring spirituality through daily prayer, providing advice and counsel to those who were blessed to call her wife, mother, sister, comadre, and amiga. Friends and family often called her so that she could pray the rosary and provide them her wholehearted support during times of need.

She will be remembered by her wise words:

-- Que vaya con Dios Go with God
-- Sea por Dios Its God’s way
-- Rezar a Jesus Pray to Jesus
-- Alimenta a todos! Feed Everyone!
-- No le digas a la gente, muestra a la gente que los amas Don’t tell people you love them, show people you love them
-- Que haiga un loco y no dos! Let there be one mad person, and not two!
-- Dios esté contigo en tu camino God be with you as you go your way
-- No digas malas palabras Don’t say bad words
-- Guarda tu dinero Save your money
-- No desperdicies Don’t be wasteful

We thank God everyday for having been blessed with such a spiritual, giving, and loving mother. She was our guiding light and will always be admired for her sacrifice and the immensity of values she instilled in each of her children. We are better people in life because of her.

To continue her legacy, a scholarship fund was created in our parents honor—the Gusmaro and Bernarda P. Reyes Memorial Scholarship. In her honor and in lieu of flowers, monetary contributions may be sent to the Educational and Leadership Foundation in care of the Reyes Scholarship at www.education-leadership.org or mail to ELF, 4290 E. Ashlan Ave., Fresno, CA 93726.