Whimsical 09

Carmen Elizabeth Rivera

June 11, 1930 ~ September 2, 2019 (age 89)

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Carmen Elizabeth Rivera, 89, of San Jose, CA. and most recently Gig Harbor, WA., passed away on Monday, September 2, 2019

Carmen lived a long happy life filled with love and laughter.  Through her beloved friendship with the Arredondo sisters, Carmen Ruiz met her future husband David Michael Rivera. He was a charming young baseball player who was always quick-witted and devoted to her from the first day that they met. Their happy relationship would lead to a marriage that lasted more than 50 years.  Dave and Carmen had five children:  Monica Rose Petty, Michael David Rivera, Yvonne Marie Gonzalez, Gregory Paul Rivera, and David Kevin Rivera.  Carmen spent her life surrounded by family and friends and loved meeting new people. She always shared her beautiful smile with a compliment or kind word to say to them before they parted ways. She particularly enjoyed parties and any other events at which she could wear her fanciest clothes, “blingy-est” jewelry, and “Love that Red” lipstick. 

Carmen was born in Porterville, CA. but at the age of 13 her family moved to San Jose, CA. where she would spend most of the next 76 years with brief stops in Roseville, CA. and Reno/Sparks, NV.  In 2017 she moved to Gig Harbor, Washington to be closer to her daughter Yvonne and her sons Greg and David and their families.  She passed away peacefully in her sleep on Monday, September 2.  She is survived by her sister Connie Cordova, five children, seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Shortly before she passed Carmen was asked what message she would like to leave to the world and her answer was, “Be kind to everyone”, a sentiment that clearly reflects Carmen's actions in life.

Carmen's ashes will be interred next to the ashes of Dave, the love of her life, at Santa Clara Mission Cemetery in California in the near future. She requested a small, private ceremony with only immediate family in attendance but all who remember Carmen may visit her and Dave in their final resting place.

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