Epifania Najera

Obituary of Epifania Najera

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Davenport for Epifania L. Nájera who passed away peacefully in her sleep on June 17, 2017 at her home in Santa Cruz, California. Mrs. Nájera is survived by her children: John Nájera, a U.S. Navy Vietnam Veteran; Marty Nájera; her daughter and son-in-law, Olga Nájera-Rámirez and Ronaldo Rámirez; her son and daughter-in-law, Roberto Nájera and Cecilia Nájera; and her daughter and son-in-law, Alicia Nájera and Russell Rodríguez. She also leaves her beloved grandchildren: Jasmine Nájera and her husband, Avery Keller; Monica Beas and her husband Leonel Beas. Elisa Ramírez, Breena Nájera, Shelly Nájera, and her two great grandchildren, Amani Keller and Red Keller. Mrs. Nájera was preceded in death by her husband Martin V. Nájera in 1964 and her daughter Elena Nájera in 2011.

Epifania was born on January 22, 1922 and lived in the small town of San Bernardo, Durango, Mexico before coming to Davenport California as a young wife in 1952. Together they built their own home in which they raised their six children. Following the untimely death of her husband in the early sixties, she raised her six young children on her own. A woman of extraordinary determination and self-sufficiency, family was everything to her and so she worked in any capacity she could to support her family, from the agricultural fields to providing child care to working parents, to ultimately spending many years at the Pacific Coast Producers Cannery in Santa Cruz before finally retiring in the early nineties. She did not stop there though and spent most of her time actively assisting in the nurturing and raising of her grandchildren.

Her deep love of family, her strong morals and principles coupled with a gentle nature, quick wit and excellent sense of humor drew to her many of our local community who sought her guidance and counseling and for whom she often served as a second mother. She gained a deep respect from all who knew her through the way she carried herself, lived her life and raised her family.

Her cooking skills were legendary amongst locals and to sit at her table and consume one of her freshly prepared flour tortillas or to experience the exquisite fate of her innocent looking chile were treasured experiences shared freely with many. Perhaps amongst the hardest thing to do for any who had these pleasures was to walk away from her table after having already consumed several platefuls of such inspired deliciousness. After all, really, what better response could there be to her gentle prodding than to give in one more time and say "ok, poquito mas."

Quiet, strong, resolute, humble, yet proud beyond measure of her family, she lived her life according to her unwavering principles and beliefs, always carrying herself with dignity and respect for herself and for others. She taught many of us, and not just family, to be strong, independent, kind and giving, and her lessons in life as well as her memory and spirit are eternal and will carry and guide those who knew and loved her for the rest of our days.

With love and deep gratitude for all you have been, "Te queremos, mama'. En Paz Descanse"

The mass will be held on Thursday June 22, 2017, at St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Church in Davenport, California, beginning at 10 a.m. Committal services will be private.

In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations to Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation. Make your check payable to Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation (or MDF) and send it to: Myotonic Dystrophy Foundation, 1004-A O'Reilly Ave., San Francisco, CA 94129. Or give online at: http://www.myotonic.org/node/81