Rita J. Martinez

OCTOBER 28, 1955 - DECEMBER 10, 2020


The Pueblo Chieftain

Rita J. Martinez, 65, a prominent Chicana activist and community leader crossed over and began her journey to a life everlasting, Dec. 10, 2020. Rita was born Oct. 28, 1955, in Pueblo, to Manuel Martinez and Lucy Cortes. She is reunited with her parents; brother, Ted Martinez; sister-in-law, Arlene Martinez; and nephews, Kenny, Derek, Baby Christian; her childrens' father, Jose Esteban Ortega; and special aunt, Isabel Cortez. She is survived by her loving children, Tomas (Latoya), Vicente and Neva (Andre) Martinez Ortega; by her siblings, Ken, Dan (Tina), Rick; and sister-in-law, Martha Martinez; grandchildren, Marcos Ortega Keshmiri, Francisco Ortega Galindo, Isa Beebe, Aaliyah Maestas; cherished nieces and nephews, adored godchildren, cousins, aunts, uncles, a multitude of friends and numerous community organizations. Rita was a loving mother to her three children, grandchildren, and was known to be a "second mother" to many others she mentored in the community. She was a fun-loving person who was known to be just as silly as she was serious. Rita shared her deep devotion to her spirituality, faith, and culture with her family and community. She held many positions on non-profit boards and oversaw many organizations including her positions as school nurse and Center Manager at Boys & Girls Club/ Girls Inc.. With more than five decades of fighting for social justice and cultural pride, Rita will be remembered as a strong and loving spirit and as a cornerstone in advancing the Chican@ Movement in Colorado. In lieu of flowers and food, the family has requested that remembrances be made in the form of contributions to Venmo (@Nevmo). Contributions will support Rita's cherished Chican@ Movement. Future church services and community celebrations will ensue at a later date. A community funeral procession travelling through town is planned for Friday, Dec. 18, 2020. Please follow El Movimiento Sigue on Facebook for procession route and future memorial services.


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