Maria Esther Avila, known for her big smile, sly humor and contagious laughter, passed away at her Calistoga home after a long illness Oct. 17. Born in Lakeview, Michigan, to Isidro and Concepcion Tamez Ortiz on October 12, 1951, she moved to Napa County in 1968. In 1987 she went to work for the California Veterans Home in Yountville and retired in 2008 due to ill health.
An independent and strong-willed woman, she inspired her family to always do their best. Retirement years found her spending time with her beloved grandchildren, enjoying the park or quietly reading at the library.
Survivors include husband Carlos Alberto Avila Solorio; daughters Maria Elena Castro, Erica and Jenny Tijerina; son George Ortiz; and five grandchildren.
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