Cover photo for Juan Jose Maldonado's Obituary
Juan Jose Maldonado Profile Photo
1946 Juan 2024

Juan Jose Maldonado

March 12, 1946 — July 5, 2024

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San Juan - Juan Jose Maldonado, age 78, passed away on July 5, 2024. He was a beloved father, husband, grandfather, friend, politico, activist, public servant and brother in Christ who will be deeply missed by all who knew him.

Juan was born on March 12, 1946 in his beloved hometown of San Juan, to parents, Renulfo Maldonado and Guadalupe Leija Maldonado. He was raised in the heart of San Juan with his 5 siblings.

Juan attended PSJA ISD and played football (Jersey #44) for the historic PSJA Bears that went to the State Playoffs in 1963. Like so many from the Valley, Juan attended Pan American College where he earned his BA in Biology and Master of Education in Counseling. During his college years he worked as a dispatch in the San Juan Police Department.

Juan has always been a proud Veteran who served his country honorably in the National Guard and as a Vietnam Era Service member in the US Army. The military would instill structure, discipline and a work ethic that would follow him throughout his life.

Juan later became an educator and a coach with the Edinburg school district and then returned to his alma mater as a professional counselor at PSJA. He would later retire to pursue a career as an insurance agent for Farmers Insurance with an office in Pharr. He was also the proud owner and bondsman for Maldonado Bail Bonds.

Throughout his career, he was known for his hard work, dedication, and passion for helping others. He had a full career of accomplishments, but it was pale in comparison to his life as an activist and political leader.

- He served as founding Chairman of La Raza Unida in Hidalgo County

- Appointed by President Carter Administration to the Economic Opportunity Council 

- Appointed member of the US Delegation by President Jimmy Carter to travel to Cuba to visit with Fidel Castro and his administration

- Chairman of the Southwest Voter Registration Program - traveled to El Salvador and Nicaragua to monitor National Elections

- Served as Democratic National Committee Member

- Former Vice Chair of the Texas Democratic Party

- Former Chair of the Hidalgo County Democratic Party 

- Former State Chairman to the Mexican American Democrats

- Served on the Hidalgo Co. RMA Board

- Served on the Hidalgo Co. Housing Authority

- Former San Juan City Commissioner

- Former San Juan City Mayor

- Presiding Chairman of the largest Hidalgo County Democratic Convention in history

Juan was a devoted father to his son, Juan REP Maldonado, a son he had in the latter part of his life who would complete Juan and Debra's family. Juan cherished the opportunity to love and care for his bonus children, Richard Andrew and Stormy Lee Zamora, who he was honored to see grow up. He was also a proud "Papa" to Zen Zamora who he enjoyed spending time with. 

Above all Juan cherished his wife Debra; they were together for 29 years and married for 22 years. She would remain by his side until his very last breath, in the house that he built for them, on the ranch he had his whole life. 

Juan was a devout Catholic and Christian who served St. John the Baptist Catholic Parish and the ACTS community. He was a true fisher of men. At the end of his life Juan would lean on his strong faith more than ever.

In his final days Debra and his son Juan REP would care for him 24 hours a day, every day. Nearly two years after being diagnosed with Pulmonary Fibrosis, Juan Maldonado died at home peacefully in his sleep on Friday, July 5, 2024 at 11:28 PM surrounded by his family, his art, his pictures and his beloved children.

He is preceded in death by his father, Renulfo Maldonado; his mother, Guadalupe Leija Maldonado; and brother, Renulfo Maldonado Jr.. He leaves behind wife, Debra Maldonado; and children, Juan REP Maldonado, Richard Zamora, and Stormy Zamora; grandson, Zen Zamora; siblings, Silvia (Gonzalo) Sandoval, Silverio "Guero" (Adie) Maldonado, Cristela Maldonado Watts, and Noe (Michelle) Maldonado.

Visitation will begin at 5 p.m., with a 6 p.m. Rosary and Celebration of Life on Wednesday, July 10, 2024, at Memorial Funeral Home in San Juan. Funeral service will take place at 2 p.m. Thursday, July 11, 2024, at St. John the Baptist Catholic Parish in San Juan. Interment will follow at San Juan Cemetery.

Funeral services are under the direction of Memorial Funeral Home in San Juan.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Juan Jose Maldonado, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Memorial Funeral Home - San Juan

311 E Expressway 83, San Juan, TX 78589

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Rosary

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

6:00 - 7:00 pm (Central time)

Memorial Funeral Home - San Juan

311 E Expressway 83, San Juan, TX 78589

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Thursday, July 11, 2024

2:00 - 11:30 pm (Central time)

St. John the Baptist Catholic Church

216 W 1st St, San Juan, TX 78589

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Interment

Thursday, July 11, 2024

3:00 - 4:00 pm (Central time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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