BROWNSVILLE, TX. - Fernando Benavidez Jr., our beloved son and brother, and an accomplished educator, writer, and author, was taken suddenly and too soon on Tuesday, August 17, 2021. He was 47 years old.
The eldest of seven siblings and part of a large and loving extended family, Fernando was a cherished friend and respected colleague who will be dearly and deeply missed by all who knew and loved him.
Always smiling, he was slow to anger and quick to make light of difficult moments, conversations, and people, preferring to crack a joke than pick a fight.
He was a lifelong learner, earning degrees from St. Edward’s University, Texas Tech University, and the University of Maryland, and made a career as a tenured professor of English/American Literature and Chicano studies.
He was a fierce advocate for Hispanic students and was working on his doctoral degree from Immaculata University in Pennsylvania, and researching his dissertation, “Advancing Equity for Latinx Students” at the time of his passing.
Fernando loved to talk loud, eat lots, laugh big, and debate the merits of great music, good books, and the many movies he enjoyed, studied, and catalogued in his memory. He spent the past year on South Padre Island, soaking up the sand and sun, living his best life with his dogs, Finn and Ziggy, his constant companions.
Those who knew Nando, even just a little, know the light we have lost in our world.
Fernando is survived by his parents, Raquel Ortiz Benavidez and Fernando Benavidez Sr. (Alma Nelly); sisters, Rachel (Josh), Lynette (John) and Leslie; brothers Andre (Marielisa), Kristian (Nadia) and Dylan; stepmother, Helia; many aunts, uncles, and cousins, and his precious niece, Valentina, who he adored. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Maria and Alfonso Ortiz and Gloria and Ruben Benavides.
Visiting Hours will be held on Saturday, August 21, 2021, from 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. with a recitation of the holy rosary scheduled for 6:00 p.m. Saturday evening within the East Chapel of Darling-Mouser Funeral Home. All services will conclude Saturday night and cremation will follow.
Memories of Fernando may be shared at www.darlingmouser.com.
Personalized funeral arrangements have been entrusted to the care of Darling-Mouser Funeral Home at 945 Palm Boulevard in Brownsville, Texas 78520, (956) 546-7111.
(Fernando's family is requesting that all those attending services please wear a mask to ensure everyone’s well being. At this time, we ask that food not be brought in to the funeral home. We thank you in advance for your cooperation with these requests.)
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