On July 25, Alfonso Montes Jr. passed away after fighting COVID-19 for 14 days. He was 69 years old.
Born on Aug. 9, 1950 in San Jose, California, he was the first of eleven children (6 boys and 5 girls), born to Alfonso Gonzalez Montes and Mary Mendoza Montes. Alfonso’s sister, Ana Montes Gonzales, is a former editor and writer for El Tecolote and is currently a board member of Acción Latina, El Tecolote’s parent non-profit and is married to Juan Gonzales, the founder of El Tecolote.
Alfonso’s parents were farm laborers who traveled with their family between San Jose and Stockton every six months to work the apricot, peach, plum, tomato, grape and cherry seasons. The couple eventually opened up a small restaurant named The Montes Café in Stockton, where they settled when Alfonso was in the 6th grade. He graduated from Linden High School in 1968.
In 1968, he married his high school sweetheart, Carol Schmidt, and had one child, Michael Remington Montes. Alfonso and Carol subsequently divorced and he later married Jean Kilpatric. Alfonso will be laid to rest with her in the San Joaquin Catholic Cemetery.
While not physically surrounded by his siblings as a result of COVID-19, the family was able to talk and “see” him thanks to the loving and professional care he received at Methodist Hospital of Sacramento. He will always be missed but never forgotten by his siblings. He passed after his parents and as in life, he was the first of their children to join them. Unfortunately, due to pandemic, there will be no funeral service until sometime in 2021.