Obituary: Willie Arana

It is with great sadness that we must report that Willie Arana of Willie Arana Pest Control died in his work truck suddenly on Saturday, March 26, in his favorite town of Presidio.

Willie was most known for always brandishing a big friendly smile to everyone. His laugh gave a positive outlook to any situation. His quirky sense of humor and humble, relaxed personality were addictive. 

Born to Ramón Arana Parra and Hermelinda Moreno Venzor in 1945, he attended Jefferson High School but graduated from Lydia Patterson Institute in El Paso in 1968. He attended San Jose State University in California on a full cross-country/basketball scholarship.

Before the 35 years pest control services in the Presidio-Marfa-Fort Davis region, he was employed as a basketball referee, Farmer Dairy ice cream man, soda delivery person with 7-Up, and a Circle K clerk; he worked in a sawmill, in landscaping, in construction and in quality inspections of grocery bags in California.

In his spare time, Willie loved road trips and traveling to the beach with his family. He was involved with many community service organizations in West Texas including the Bowie High School Alumni Association in El Paso.

He is survived by his wife Nina Zamora; his ex-wife Manuela Lara; his stepfamily, Adrian Zamora and Alette Jackson; his sons and daughters — William Arana Jr., Lily Chavez Arana, Rocio and Arlene Arana; and 12 grandchildren including his newest, 2-year-old granddaughter Emma Nadía Arana Torres. 

Sympathy letters can be mailed to his El Paso home office at 2400 San Jose Ave, El Paso, TX 79930 or emailed to: [email protected]. The office phone number is 915-566-2815.

The memorial service will be held at Iglesia San Ignacio, 408 Park Street, El Paso, Texas. A public viewing will take place Friday, April 8, from 3 to 7 p.m., with the Rosary following from  7 to 8 p.m.

A funeral Mass will be held on Saturday, April 9, at 10:30 a.m., with a reception to follow afterwards.

Presidio, Marfa, Alpine, Balmorhea and Fort Davis were very familiar to us. Your community welcomed us with that warm Texas hospitality. It was like a home away from home, working in your many towns’ homes and businesses. We are sincerely grateful for your loyalty to my father’s business. He loved working for y’all.