Merkley-Mitchell Mortuary

3655 5th Ave, San Diego, CA


Teresa Sanchez Gonzalez

November 24, 1924March 5, 2020

Teresa Sanchez Gonzalez, 95 passed away quietly at her home on Thursday, March 5, 2020. Teresa was born on November 24,1924 in Plan de Barrancas, Jalisco, Mexico as the only child to Jesus and Sixta Sanchez. Since the early age of seven, Teresa had a passion for people and a tremendous work ethic. She worked at her parents bakery at her home selling baked bread to the local residents and was often “caught” giving free bread to the poor and older people who couldn’t afford to pay. Many years later and after opening her own restaurant in San Diego, her tremendous gift of connecting to her customers and people in general was often highlighted by her generosity to make sure everyone was fed whether or not they could afford to pay. Her motto was that “No one should go hungry in the world, and especially in my restaurant!” She deeply understood the pain and suffering of others and wanted to make sure that all who came to visit her restaurant felt loved and welcomed.

Teresa also loved the natural beauty of life; she adored flowers, music and birds. And as such the entrance to her home was adorned by overflowing rows of roses. After a long hard day at work, she was welcomed home by her beautiful doves. She loved these birds and they lived an unusually long life. For years, it was a mystery as to how these beautiful creatures could live to be thirty plus years old? However, after some time the answer to that question became quite clear; it was her love.

Music served as a conduit to her past while living as a young girl in Mexico and as a young woman in San Diego. She loved to sing along to her favorite songs to celebrate a happy occasion. Some of her happiest moments were celebrated at the restaurant while listening to music played by Mariachis. On June, 24, 1941 Teresa married Juan Gonzalez. They raised three daughters Connie, Marie, Rosa and four sons, Joe, Jesse, John and Javier. Hailing from a humble start, and after taking the proper steps, she and her husband left Mexico with four children in tow and made their move to immigrate to San Diego, California in hopes of creating a better life for their family. She and her husband opened up “The Restaurant “on 12th and Broadway in 1957 becoming one of the most successful restaurants in San Diego at that time and where it still stands today sixty-two years later. With the loving support and devotion of her sons, daughters and grandchildren, Teresa was able to remain a successful restaurant owner despite the death of her husband at 42 in 1966. She had incredible faith and the stamina to continue to remain loving, kind, optimistic, and hard working in light of her own personal tragedies and obstacles. Even after the loss of her husband of 25 years of marriage, the death of her mother Sixta, the death of her daughter Rosa at twenty and grandson John Tipton at thirty eight, she was always very proud that she was able to take care of her family on her own. Her unwavering faith and love of her family, customers and community allowed her to live a vibrant life. She was known to greet everyone in her sweet heartfelt voice whether male or female with “Hola Beautiful.” Teresa had an incredible way of brightening anyone’s day by simply saying those words. Those endearing words rang true as she was able to see the beauty in everyone around her. Her pride and joy extended beyond her restaurant business. She loved her family very much and was extremely proud of each and everyone of them. She was dearly loved by many of her customers. Many of whom became like family over the years. They came for the delicious homemade food, however stayed because it felt like home. Her list of devoted customers grew over the years, often referring to her as “Mama Teresa” because she was like a mother to everyone and no doubt touched each person she met. A classy woman up to the last days of her life, she will be remembered for her beauty and grace exemplified by her faith, courage, dignity, and pride. And like many good stories, this one too has a happy ending. Teresa left this world having accomplished her goals of creating a better life for her large family, passing her love down through three generations after her. Her legacy serves as a reminder to her surviving six children, thirteen grandchildren, twenty seven great- grandchildren, and her long-time care-taker, Nati whom she considered family. She will always remain in the hearts and in the minds of those who knew and loved her. She remains a role model of strength and an inspiration of hope, who made great sacrifices for those she loved and never gave up.

Services for Teresa will be held at 11 am on Tuesday, March 17, 2020 at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery & Mausoleum, 4470 Hilltop Drive, San Diego, CA 92102. Graveside burial to follow.

The family suggests memorial contributions in lieu of flowers to: Elizabeth Hospice of San Diego. 500 La Terraza Blvd. Suite 130 Escondido, California 92025 www. Elizabethhospice.org Attn: Suzanne Markland (760) 796-3737


  • Funeral Mass Tuesday, March 17, 2020


Teresa Sanchez Gonzalez

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