GEORGETOWN/SAN BENITO, TX—Daniel Chapa, Jr. from Georgetown, TX, formerly from San Benito, TX entered into eternal life on Tuesday, August 30, 2011 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. He died peacefully at The Lighthouse at Altenheim Hospice in Round Rock, TX, surrounded by his wife of 56 years and his children. He was 89 years old.
Daniel was born in General Teran, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on March 4, 1922. He immigrated to the United States in 1924, where he settled in San Benito, TX with his parents, Daniel and Petra Gonzales Chapa. He became a U.S. citizen in 1942 prior to entering the service. Daniel attended San Benito public schools graduating from San Benito High School in 1941. He enrolled in Texas A&M University in the fall of 1942. Three months after enrolling at Texas A&M he was drafted and served in the Army during and after World War II from 1942-1946. He was a Sergeant in the 44th Fighter Squadron Army of the United States, serving in battles and campaigns in New Guinea, Southern Philippines and Luzon Western pacific Air Combat Borneo. Daniel returned to San Benito, where he helped his father manage the family business, D. Chapa Grocery. He continued to manage the business after the death of his father, expanding the store in 1962. In 1975 with his health declining, he sold the grocery store and retired for a short while. He returned to work for Cameron County as an Assistant Veteran’s Service Officer in 1976 retiring in February in 1995. Daniel was active in the San Benito community serving as City Councilman from 1968-1970 and 1972-1975. He served as Mayor Pro-tem in 1975. He served on the Board of Directors for San Benito City Utilities from 1976-1991. During the years that he was a businessman in San Benito, he was active in the San Benito Chamber of Commerce, Padre Island Zoning Board of Directors, Dolly Vinsant Hospital Board of Directors, and Knights of Columbus. He was a lifetime member of the Catholic War Veterans, American Legion Post 205 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5402. Daniel was a member of St. Helen Catholic Church in Georgetown and a former member of St. Benedict Catholic Church in San Benito.
Daniel is survived by his wife of 56 years, Hilda Farias Chapa, who lovingly took care of him throughout his illness. He is survived by his daughter, Irma Bauer and son-in-law, Chris Bauer from Round Rock, TX; daughter, Carmen Chapa and son-in-law, Warren Johnson from Dallas, TX; son, Daniel Chapa, III, from New Rochelle, NY; daughter, Hilda McDuff and son-in-law, Danny McDuff from Southlake, TX; daughter, Dora Fowler and son-in-law, Andrew Fowler from Grand Rapids, MI; his grandchildren, Christopher Bauer of San Antonio, TX; Daniel Bauer of Round Rock, TX; Daniel Chapa, IV and Miranda Chapa of Hinsdale, IL; Briana McDuff of Southlake, TX and Katherine Fowler and Ethan Fowler of Grand Rapids, MI. He is also survived by his brothers, Romeo Chapa (Berta) from Brownsville, TX and Ruben (Noemi) Chapa from Cedar Park, TX; and his sister, Counselo Champion from Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico; along with numerous nieces and nephews.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Daniel Chapa, Sr. and Petra Gonzales Chapa; his brother, Luciano Chapa; and his sisters, Bertha Chapa and Blanca Trevino.
The family wishes to thank the Rev. William Straten and Rev. Jairo Sandoval and the communion ministers of St. Helen Catholic Church in Georgetown who ministered to Daniel while he was in Georgetown, Judy Roberts, who helped with his care the last two years of his life and the nurses and staff at The Lighthouse at Altenheim Hospice facility who provided comfort and care to Daniel and the family during his final days.
Visitation was held Monday, September 5, 2011 from 5-9 p.m., with a holy rosary recited at 7 p.m. at San Benito Funeral Home. Mass of Christian burial was celebrated by the Rev. Raul Salas, OMI and Deacon Manuel Sanchez on Tuesday, September 6, 2011 at 10 a.m. at St. Benedict Catholic Church located at 351 S. Bowie St. in San Benito, TX. Burial was held at Mont Meta Memorial Park.
Pallbearers were Christopher Bauer, Daniel Bauer, Chris Bauer, Warren Johnson, Danny McDuff and Andrew Fowler.
Honorary pallbearers were Romeo Chapa, Ruben Chapa, Briana McDuff, Daniel Chapa, IV, Miranda Chapa, Katherine Fowler and Ethan Fowler.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Alzheimer’s Association National Office 225 N. Michigan Ave., Fl. 17, Chicago, IL 60601 in memory of Daniel Chapa, Jr. or visit http://www.alz.org/index.asp for Daniel Chapa Tribute Fund or The Lighthouse at Altenheim Hospice Facility, 100 College St., Round Rock, TX 78664.
You are invited to leave condolences to the family of Daniel Chapa, Jr. at www.sanbenitofuneralhome.com.
Funeral arrangements are under the care of San Benito Funeral Home, 1400 W. Highway 77, San Benito, TX; (956) 361-9192.