Donald Ramon De Leon's antecedents stem back eight generations to the time that the first footprints of his family made their impressions on South Texas soil, approximately 236 years ago. Nobility comes in various forms, however, the blood that flowed in Donald's veins was solidly earned by his forefather's noble efforts. Through the ages, they worked stoically to carve out the plains of civilization upon a formidably harsh landscape in the Valley of the Rio Grande. Donald inherited more than just a historical legacy, he carried himself with special pride that is rarely seen, other than that which is possessed by a unique fraternity of pioneers who could claim to have built what our present generation now enjoys. He also wore a badge of personal nobility that he won by his own accord, as a man who was kind, gentle and compassionate. No doubt, he absorbed the pure and true values that his parents gifted him of. When he returns to the soil that his ancestors lent such devoted stewardship to, he will indeed be laid to rest in his home - “El Potrero del Espiritu Santo”. Eugene Fernandez - Historian, author and friend.
Donald Ramon De Leon, 56, passed away on Saturday, July 25, 2020, at Solara Hospital in Brownsville.
Donald Ramon De Leon was born in Stephenville, TX to Sylvia Gomez and Ernesto L. De Leon. He was a descendant of a Brownsville Pioneer family. His roots trace back to Salvador de la Garza who settled the Spanish Land Grants in Northern Mexico and what is now South Texas in 1781. He graduated from Pace High School Class in 1983 where he was a member of the Viking Basketball Team. Along with his brother Ernest they were known as the “Twin Towers.” He attended TSC and TCU, was a businessman and entrepreneur in Houston and worked in the field of insurance upon moving to Brownsville.
Donald became a well-known figure in our community by serving as a member of the following:
On the Board of Adjustments with the City of Brownsville, a member of the Knights of Columbus, Order of Alhambra Caravan # 91, St. Mary’s Men’s Club, and he worked tirelessly to serve the homeless in soup kitchens and shelters. He was also a candidate for public office to include: the Port of Brownsville, Cameron County Clerk, Texas House of Representatives District 37 and U.S. Congress. Don, as he was known to some, will always be remembered for his commitment to his family and our community. He had admiration for his friends and adoration for his family. He was a son, a brother, a father and a friend. He leaves behind fond and joyous memories to all of those who knew him.
He is preceded in death by his maternal grandparents Reynaldo and Eva Ramirez Gomez; paternal grandparents Ramon De Leon and Amelia Vera De Leon; uncles Ramon “Monche” De Leon, Jimmy Gomez, Ray Gomez; aunts: Mary Gomez, Nora de Leon Ramirez; cousins Ronnie De Leon, Tim Gomez, Zoila Gomez Villarreal.
Left behind to cherish his memories are: Alicia S. Shears-Ellul (daughter); Toni Barnard and her sons: Austin Ramon Barnard and Donald Ernesto De Leon; (his parents): Ernesto L. De Leon and Sylvia Gomez De Leon; Ernest R. De Leon (twin brother) and his wife Victoria Chazco-De Leon; Sylvia A. De Leon-Solis Ph.D (sister) and her husband Ricardo Solis Ed.D; Gustavo M. De Leon (brother) and his wife Cristina Garza-De Leon; Sandra M. De Leon (sister) and Victoria De Leon (niece). He also leaves behind uncles, aunts and many cousins.
Due to the pandemic that we are experiencing, the De Leon family has decided that it would be in everyone's best interest that all services for Don be private. The family is planning to hold a Memorial Mass in the future when the situation improves. The family thanks you for your understanding and cooperation. Due to circumstances beyond our control, we regret that we will not be able to live stream the services for Mr. De Leon. We thank you for your understanding.
Mark Lackner, Jose Yebra, Robert Sanchez, Rene Cardenas, Larry Sutton, and Gerardo Chazco are honored to be serving as Don’s pallbearers.
Honorary pallbearers will be: Austin Ramon Barnard, Donald Ernesto De Leon, Rolando Ramirez, Ramon De Leon, Rene De Leon, Robert Caruthers, Gilberto Chazco, David Atkinson, Juan Carlos Torre, Rolando Rivas, Pat Lehmann, Dino Chavez, Raul Viada, Ray De Luna and Xavier Garza.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Don’s name to St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 1914 Barnard Rd., Brownsville, TX 78520.
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