Pedro Jose Pizarro
April 14, 1927 – July 25, 2020
Pedro José Pizarro, wise, gentle, and loving husband, father, and grandfather, died on July 25, 2020 at the age of 93 in his home city of Tampa. He died of cardiac arrest but had suffered from progressive memory loss for several years, made more challenging by the recent loss of his wife of 55 years, Eva Pizarro, on December 29, 2019.
He is survived by his children Eva Milan (Pizarro) and Pedro J. Pizarro; his children-in-law Eric Milan and Monica Kohler; his grandchildren Anthony and Kaylee Milan, and Alana and Gabriel Pizarro; and his sister Nelly Pizarro.
Pedro was born on April 14, 1927, in Coamo, Puerto Rico, to Ramón Pizarro and Consuelo Lafuente. After his father’s death when Pedro was 3, his mother moved with Pedro and his two sisters to live with his maternal grandfather, Ricardo Lafuente Martinez, who managed a lumber yard in Caguas. Pedro, known since then as “Poché” to his close family and friends, inherited his math skills from his grandfather, who impressed Poché by always quickly calculating in his head the volumes and prices for vast stacks of lumber.
Pedro contracted tuberculosis at age 17 and was out of school for several years, but fortunately recovered thanks to an early diagnosis and access to penicillin treatment facilitated by an aunt who had recently completed nursing school. As a young man he sang and soloed with semiprofessional choirs and was very active preaching with a church organization. He became a bookkeeper but was financially unable to attend college in his youth. Given his sharp intellect, he amazingly earned his Certified Public Accountant license without a prior college degree, and later completed his bachelor’s degree in his 40s.
While working at a bank in San Juan, Puerto Rico, he met his future wife Eva, and they married on August 22, 1964. The family relocated to Tampa briefly and then Miami in 1979, then moved permanently back to Tampa in 1984, and lived in their beloved home in the Carrollwood area for 35 years. He worked for several decades as a staff auditor at the Florida Bar, helping prosecute trust account abuse. After his retirement from the Bar, he set up a private practice to support attorneys wanting to manage their accounts with high integrity; he never took on a client he would not feel good about defending. Following Eva’s death, Pedro lived in the Atria Lutz assisted living facility; the family is truly grateful for Atria staff’s care and support during Pedro’s final months.
Pedro had a deep faith and gravitated in midlife to the Lutheran church for its theology of grace. At Grace Lutheran Church, he was well known as a decades-long choir member and developed a tradition of singing “God Bless America” every Fourth of July, which he last did in 2017 at the young age of 90.
Although Eva was a wonderful cook, she and Pedro always enjoyed going out to many restaurants with their family. He loved driving and, by the time he left Puerto Rico, he had likely been on every stretch of road on the island; life in Florida meant much longer roads to explore in and out of the state. His favorite destination was definitely Walt Disney World, even if only to stroll around with Eva or enjoy the Disney ambiance from a good bench.
Given the challenges posed by COVID-19, a memorial service will not be held. Once the pandemic has abated, the family will scatter his ashes together with Eva’s in the ocean, as she had requested and he wanted to follow. In lieu of flowers, the family asks you to consider contributions in his memory to the Music Ministry at Grace Lutheran Church, 3714 W. Linebaugh Ave., Tampa, FL 33618, with Pedro’s name on the memo line; funds will be used to support the choir’s outreach in the Tampa community, a fitting tribute to Pedro’s years of singing. Alternately, you may also consider a contribution to the Alzheimer’s Association via his tribute page at this web address: http://act.alz.org/goto/Pedro_Poche_Pizarro .
Poché is now at peace with God and with his beloved wife Eva, who probably greeted him with a kiss and just a little scolding for taking so long to join her!
- Alzheimer's Association
Music Ministry at Grace Lutheran Church
3714 W. Linebaugh Ave, Tampa, FL 33618
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Pedro Jose Pizarro
July 28, 2020
I can still hear dear Tio Poche singing ! Some of my favorite memories include Poche driving us around Puerto Rico and singing "Granada" or some other beautiful ballad. I remember him calling out to his mother asking, " Mammi, que es esso?" , as he sat down to his breakfast steak that she had prepared and I had secretly decorated with little petals. My mother wasn't amused, but my uncle smiled at me, acknowledging my " gift". Love you , Tio.