Alton, IL


Joseph Esparza

Joseph Esparza, 83, returned to his heavenly home on May 13, 2018, after a valiant battle with a longterm illness. His devotion to this family and his firm belief in God supported him in his struggle and ultimately gave him peace. He was born on January 28, 1935, in McAllen, Texas, the son of the late Louis and Mary Delores (Garcia) Esparza. He married the former Carrie Sue Jackson on December 29, 1958, in Jackson, Missouri, and she survives. Other survivors include one daughter: Tina Esparza of Bethalto, two sons and a daughter in law: Joey and Debbie Esparza of Mission Viejo, California, Derek Jason Esparza of Rosewood Heights, four grandchildren: Elysia Sepich and her husband: James of Columbia, Illinois, Nicolas Perez of Bethalto, Holly Robeen of Godfrey, Antonio Perez of Rosewood Heights, four great – grandchildren: Ayden, Ava, Natalia, Zoey, two sisters: Imogene Woodson of Bethalto, Tomasita Sine of East Alton, three brothers and a sister in law: John Esparza of Alton, Louis Esparza of Freeburg, Illinois, Nick and Shirley Esparza of Fenton, Missouri, many nieces and nephews. He is also survived by his extended family: Ariana Perdomo, Jordan Yates, Jeffrey E. Rains, and Garry L. Cagle, Jr.

After 22 years of employment with Shell Oil Wood River Illinois Refinery, Joseph retired at the age of 67 to devote his time with his loving wife and family.

Joseph found comfort in singing his favorite Gospel songs to his family and friends in both English and Spanish. He enjoyed spending time with his family and would often refer to his grandchildren and great grandchildren as his babies. One of Joseph’s favorite quotations to repeat was “You can make this a Heavenly world or a Hellish world it is your choice”. Even on his worst days he always found something to be happy and thankful for. He will be dearly missed and forever in the hearts of his family and loved ones.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers: Ygnacio Chico Esparza, Pete Esparza, Jessie Esparza, three sisters: Angelita Dunn, Marry Grace Esparza, and Mary Alice Feldman.

In celebration of his life, visitation will be from 4pm to 8pm on Wednesday, May 16, 2018, at Pitchford Funeral Home in Wood River. Funeral services will be held at 11am on Thursday, May 17, 2018, at the funeral home. Pastor Charles West will officiate. Burial will follow at Rose Lawn Memory Gardens in Bethalto.

Special thank you to Dr. Rajnikant Patel, Dr. Erik Daniels and to the staff at Fresenius Dialysis Clinic, Rosewood Care Center and OSF St. Anthony’s in Alton, for the many years of care, comfort and compassion.

Memorials are suggested to the American Kidney Foundation and will be accepted at the funeral home.

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