OBITUARY: Natalia F. Balderrama

Natalia F. Balderrama passed from this life to be with her Lord and Savior on Saturday evening, April 8, 2023, at the young age of 97. She was born in Mogollon, New Mexico, to the late Ruben P. and Eloisa (Ayon) Fuentes. She married Monico B. Balderrama in Shafter, Texas, on May 7, 1944. They had six children and enjoyed over 42 years together before he passed away September 2, 1986. During their marriage, they spent time in Shafter, Del Rio and Marfa. They were members of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Marfa.

Beloved by all her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Natalia was the best mother of all. She knew how to make the best food for the soul when all would visit her in Marfa. She was a woman of love, compassion and grace mixed with a little fire and could be a little bit feisty. Any of her kids and grandkids could have a good laugh with her. She loved her husband with all her heart, and after his passing her kids, grandkids and great-grandkids became the center of her world, second to the Lord. Natalia was a faithful servant of our Lord Jesus Christ and passed that on to her family. She loved music, especially the songs the love of her life, Monico, played for her. Natalia especially loved the Marfa Lights Festival and looked forward to all her family visiting during this time. She spent most of her years in Marfa as a caregiver to the elderly and provided such loving care to her patients. Everyone in Marfa loved her. As years passed and she could no longer physically attend church, she enjoyed watching Mass and would spend her days and nights praying fiercely in the spirit for her loved ones. She also enjoyed cooking shows and playing dominoes. Her favorite color was yellow.

In addition to her parents and loving husband, Monico, she was preceded to Heaven by her son, Ruben Patrick Balderrama; three siblings: Thomas Fuentes, Nicolas Fuentes and Esperanza Lujan; great-grandson, Jacob Anthony Florez; grandson-in-law, David Trudell; and brother-in-law, Jimmy Guerro.

Those left to cherish her memory and carry on her legacy include children: Mary Helen (Nena) Valles and husband Rick of Jal, New Mexico; Raul Balderrama and wife Julie of Kermit, Texas; Gloria Balderrama and husband Manuel Abila of Odessa, Texas; Edmundo Balderrama and wife Yolanda of Monahans, Texas; and Nora Ann Heidelberg and husband Jerry of Hobbs, New Mexico; brother Hector Molina; sister Mary Alarcon; grandchildren Michelle Gonzales, Michael Gonzales and wife Sonya, Sheryl Balderrama, Janette “Jetsy” Balderrama and wife Maggie, Monica Norina Nunez, Amanda Nunez-Florez, Ida Trudell-Balderrama and partner Michelle, Jolene Santos and husband Marlo, Joe Abel Lujan and wife Jenna, Audria Lujan, Joann Moore and husband Kyle; and great-grandchildren Aaron Nathaniel Florez, Adrian Noel Florez, Natalia Gonzales and husband Daniel, Jennifer Gonzales, Asia Love Lujan, Ethan Saiz, Isabel Trudell, Abby Trudell, Aidan Santos, Ella Rose Santos, Olivia Lujan, Natalie Lujan and Amelia Lujan.

Arrangements were entrusted to Acres West Funeral Chapel.

Visitation was held at Acres West Funeral Chapel in Odessa on Saturday, April 15, 2023 from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, April 16, 2023 from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. Rosary was recited Sunday evening at 7 p.m. in Odessa at Acres West.

Funeral was Monday, April 17, 2023 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Marfa, Texas, with a Rosary beginning at 1 p.m. and Mass of Christian burial following right after. Burial followed at Merced Cemetery. Pallbearers include: Michael Gonzales, Jetsy Balderrama, Joe Abel Lujan, Aaron Florez, Adrian Florez and Ethan Saiz.

Condolences may be sent to the family online at:

In lieu of flowers, donations in her honor can be made to St. Mary’s Catholic Church of Marfa or Kingdom Church in Odessa.