RAUL M. LEAL
EDINBURG - Raul M. Leal, 83, died on September 5, 2021, due to complications from Alzheimer's disease.
Dad was born in San Juan, Texas, on October 2, 1937, to Norberto and Filomena Leal and was raised in Las Milpas. He was their sixth child out of twelve. As a child, he worked with his family, farming and driving tractors. Dad worked fields in the Valley and other parts of Texas and the central United States. It was back-breaking work, and it taught our dad that you must do what you can to support your family.
Our dad met our mom, Maria Rita Garza, in a chance meeting at her sister's wedding reception and asked her to dance. They fell in love and got married on January 12, 1964, in Rio Grande City. Soon afterwards, Mom and Dad started a family. Tragically, their first child, a son, was lost during pregnancy, but hope was restored when they welcomed a baby girl, Raquel, the following year. Eddie, Mary, and Jay followed. Their family was now complete. Dad had a larger-than-life personality and had the gift for gab. He was perfect for sales. Dad worked for oil distributors throughout South Texas, including Premier Freeway, Texas Star, Hollon Oil, and Y Gas & Oil. He received multiple sales awards, including salesman of the month, salesman of the year, and territory manager of the year.
Volunteering and community service was our dad's passion. He volunteered with LULAC, the Weslaco Little League, the Hidalgo County Juvenile Court Conference Committee, St. Pius X Church (Weslaco), St. Joseph's Church (Edinburg), and the band booster clubs for Weslaco High, Edinburg High, and Edinburg North. Dad was most proud of was his work with the Lions Club. He never left home without his Lions Club pin on his lapel or shirt pocket. Dad was originally a member of the Mid-Valley Lions Club in Weslaco, where he served as president and a Guiding Lion for the Elsa Lions Club. He was later a founder and charter president for the Edinburg Early Risers Club. Dad received numerous awards from the Lions Clubs, including Lion of the Year and the inaugural Red Bone Lion award. He also served as assistant district governor for the area. Dad really enjoyed the service projects and fellowship. It brought him so much joy to join his grandchildren on these projects to help others in need. Once Dad retired from working, he spent his days with Mom watching the grandchildren. He loved being a grandpa. His favorite days were weekends with the entire extended family coming over for his barbecue.
Dad is survived by his wife of 57 years, Rita; his four children, Raquel L. Martinez (Javier), Eddie Leal (Diana), Mary Nevares (Ruben), and Jay Leal (Kristina); seven grandchildren, Calista Nevares, Michael Nevares, Alainna Nevares, Caroline Leal, Christine Leal, Catherine Leal, and Luke Leal; his siblings, Jovita Lopez, Anita L. Flores, Norbeto Leal, Jr., and Eva Garcia. Mr. Leal was preceded in death are his parents, Norberto and Filomena Leal; his siblings, Ramon Leal, Benita L. Garza, Ramiro Leal, Elva L. Gonzalez, Ruben Leal and Bobby Leal.
Visitation will be from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. with a 7 p.m. rosary, Tuesday, September 7, 2021, at Legacy Chapels 4610 South Jackson Road in Edinburg. Funeral service will be at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, September 8, 2021, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Edinburg. The family is grateful for the loving care of Barcelona Assisted Living in McAllen. In lieu of flowers, the family requests contributions to be made in honor of Raul M. Leal to the Edinburg Early Risers Lions Club, PO BOX 2104, Edinburg TX 78540.
Funeral services are under the direction of Legacy Chapels in Edinburg.
To send flowers to the family in memory of Raul M. Leal, please visit our flower store