OBITUARY

Salvador B Mena

April 24, 1949March 15, 2021
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Salvador (Sal) Baca Mena was born April 24th 1949 in Santa Paula California to David and Carmen Mena. He was raised in Corcoran, California along with his siblings as the youngest son of six children. Sal graduated from Corcoran High School in 1967. He then attended San Jose City College, transferred to San Jose State University but ultimately graduated with his bachelors of art degree in Social Welfare from Fresno State in 1973.Sal was the first in his family to earn a college degree. He was inspired by his own EOP&S mentor to become an Educational Advisor to serve underrepresented minority students. Shortly after graduating he was hired at Fresno City College and worked as an EOP&S Educational Advisor where he proudly served a vast array of student populations for thirty-three years before retiring in 2006. Two of his favorite quotes he would remind students included “Failure to plan is planning to fail,” and “Knowledge absorbs knowledge.” Sal was dedicated to helping his students find success and was admired by his students and colleagues alike.

Sal met the love of his life Teresa in 1980 through a mutual friend. They then later started dating and were married in 1985. Sal and his wife were blessed with a daughter Felicia and son Adam. As a father, he enjoyed attending all his kids sports events, and awards assembly. Throughout his life he infused his Catholic faith and family as his top priority. Sal had a deep faith which encompassed all aspects of his life; his compassion for his students, love for his family, and generosity for his friends and neighbors. Sal and Theresa wanted to instill their Catholic values in their children and made the sacrifice to send them to Our Lady of Victory Catholic School then later to San Joaquin Memorial High School. Sal enjoyed spending time with his wife and kids and never hesitated to do what was best for his family. Sal and Teresa continued to help support their children while attending college and beginning their careers as educators following in their father’s footsteps. His daughter Felicia and her husband Scott have a daughter Adelina and a son Joaquin who were Sals first grandchildren. His son Adam and his wife Denise are expecting their first child, Stella later this summer. This is Sal’s third grandchild.

One of Sal’s greatest passions was American muscle cars and in his lifetime built multiple classic cars. Sal was also very artistic, a trait that was inherited from his father and which he passed down to both his children who are art teachers. His creativity did not end there. Sal was known for his ability to fix just about anything. As a son of a mechanic and with his trusty duct tape and gorilla glue there was nothing he couldn't fix.

Sal was the type of man that could connect with anyone. He was very charismatic, funny, articulate and compassionate. With this type of personality, he easily gained many friends from work, the gym, his neighborhood and parents from his children’s school. Sal was a caring person who valued his friends, family and neighbors. He also strived to advocate for his Hispanic community. Sal will most be remembered for his vivid storytelling, laughter, sense of humor and larger than life personality. He is survived by wife Teresa, daughter Felicia, son in law Scott, their children Adelina and Joaquin, son Adam, daughter in law Denise, granddaughter Stella, and siblings Josie Mena, Christine Marquez, Teri Espinosa, David Mena and his wife Sandra, Susan Syljuberget and her husband Rein. Until we might again in paradise, we love you.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.whitehurstsullivan.com for the Mena family.

Services

  • Recitation of the Rosary - Due to COVID restrictions the Rosary services will be private, however all the services will be live streamed. Family and friends will be contacted directly by the immediate family regarding the Rosary Service.

    Thursday, April 8, 2021

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  • Funeral Service-Due to COVID restrictions the funeral services will be private, however all the services will be live streamed through Zoom. Family and friends will be contacted directly by the immediate family regarding the Funeral Service.

    Friday, April 9, 2021

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Memories

Salvador B Mena

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Dolores Vital

April 9, 2021

A toda la familia los acompaño en su pérdida pero recuerden que haora nos aconpañara donde quiera que estémonos dios los vendiga y los yene de paz y un fuerte abraso

Alexnder Flores

April 5, 2021

Theresa & family Angie & I are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. God bless all of you.

Cristina Masterson

April 4, 2021

I will always remember his infectious smile and generous nature. He was always ready to help anyone in need. I will always cherish the time we spent working together in EOPS and the collaborative effort we continued once I moved on to financial aid. Rest In Peace my friend. Your reward should be great.

Kathy Bonilla

March 30, 2021

Dear Mena Family,
Please know how special knowing Sal was to me throughout these years. He was the first person with whom I worked who made me understand just how much a classified employee could affect the lives of our students. Whenever faculty retired, one would hear how much they helped students. I didn't always hear that about classified. But when Sal retired, a number of current and former students thanked him for his service and his assistance in helping them finish their degrees or transfer. His dedication was so apparent and revered. On a personal note, he was also a good friend. I always enjoyed our talks about his family, church and anything else that caught our fancy. He would come by my office occasionally after retiring to say hi and see how I was doing. He was a great guy, a good friend, and a great father and husband. I am sorry for your loss.

Theresa Bravo

March 29, 2021

Our condolences to Sal’s family.
Sal was one of the nicest person I ever met. He was always ready to help with what ever he could or where he was needed. He loved watching his children play sports. May he Rest In Peace.

Jeanine Thomas Castle

March 26, 2021

Sal - always will be in our EOP&S Family heart!

Manuel Lerma

March 24, 2021

Nino or Godfather in English....just as in the classic movies, you were larger than life. My Dad could not have chosen a better man to bless me with as my Nino. Growing up, I knew on my birthday or Christmas, you would show up with the coolest gift. Being the car enthusiast you were your whole life, I received a vast collection of RC toys ranging from tanks, race cars to anything that was fast. However, there was one gift that topped them all when I was a kid in Visalia. You came to the house and gave me a helmet. Extremely perplexed and a little disappointed due to the fact my Nino always gave me the coolest gifts, you just grinned. Then you took me outside and gave me the mini bike you built for me. That mini bike became well known in both my neighborhood in Visalia as well as in Corcoran at my Grandparents house. I will miss your big hugs and giant laugh. You truly were a giant among men. Although you will be missed by all the family and friends that you have left behind, we will all take comfort in knowing that you will no longer struggle with the health issues you endured throughout your later years. I love you Nino and know you will continue to watch over me from above.

Pauline Fuller

March 24, 2021

Sal, my buddy, co-worker, and friend.
We go way back. We worked together at Fresno City College for 35 years plus.
We lived around the corner from each other.
Went I needed help around the house (that needed a man to do) I would call my brother Sal and he would come around and tease me about charging me.
We car polled some time to work sharing time with Felisha and Adam sitting in the back of the seat truck to school.
We shared so many good and sad memories together.
He attended my mother funeral and was always there for support.
God knew that I needed a brother to make me laugh and to share his family with me, I will always treasure the times we shared
Sal loved his family and was so proud of Felisha and Adam and truly happy spending time with his two grand kids
I will always love, and respect Terry for allowing Sal to be my brother and friend.
Loving and praying for you all

Consuelo Lerma

March 23, 2021

I knew Sal thru my brother Manuel Lerma going back to high school. Always knew him to be laughing, joking, teasing kids, a super nice guy. We became compadres when we sponsored to baptise Manuel's only son, Manuel Jr. He had so much life, enjoyed his friends and cherished his family, I'm so sad that he suffered such health issues. He will be missed by all who knew him. Many condolences to his wife Teresa and the entire family.


Manuel Lerma

March 23, 2021

Our deepest sympathy to all the Mena family. Compadre Sal, my wife Lupe and I were life long friends. Starting in high school taking over the Spanish Club heading paradaes down Whitney Ave past the world famous Jolly Kone drive Inn. We continued our Journey in Corcoran forming the Corcoran Teenagers Organization giving our city youth something to do with dances and group trips. We always laughed and enjoyed our company for over 55 years. As we became young adults we drove together in Mr. Mena's 59 Chevy Impala station wagon to register at College of the Sequoias in Visalia. Seeking a broader experience we decided to attend San Jose City College. Our involvement including taking over the Chicano Student Club, later to become MECHA as it developed. Sal saw the many needs of our under represented Hispanic Community and we started taking action, From no Hispanic teachers or counselors we saw the huge Hispanic drop out rate at the college and challenged the administration to take action. By the time we left City College there were 2 Hispanic and one African American Counselors as well as several Chicano teachers. Sal Went on to dedicate his life to helping students becoming a counselor at Fresno City College, he made a difference and touched the lives of thousands of students over a fully enriched career until retirement.
Sal will be missed by his life long friend as well as from the many, many individuals he touched with his education, training, compassion and zest for life and laughter.

FROM THE FAMILY

1 year old Sal 1950

FROM THE FAMILY

5 years old 1954

FROM THE FAMILY

6 years old 1955

FROM THE FAMILY

7 years old, 1956

FROM THE FAMILY

School photo Bret Harte Elementary, Corcoran 1956

FROM THE FAMILY

Sal's April Birthday, 1956

FROM THE FAMILY

Sal at 9 years old in 1958

FROM THE FAMILY

Experiencing Disneyland magic with eldest sister Josie in 1959

FROM THE FAMILY

12 years old, 1961

FROM THE FAMILY

Sal at 13 years old in May of 1962 with youngest sister Susan