Beloved wife and mother, Darlene Marie Gallegos passed away peacefully in her home on Wednesday, September 25, 2019 after a two-year battle with cancer. She was 62 years old.
Darlene was born December 08, 1956, to George Espinosa and Beatrice Marie Herrera in Durango, Colorado. She grew up on the Espinosa ranch in Cat Creek. A rough and tumble tomboy, Darlene spent much of her youth riding horses and exploring the outdoors with her siblings.
On October 23, 1973, she married her husband of 46 years, Chris Gallegos. Together they raised their two sons, Christopher and Jeremy, and opened their home to countless other young people.
The love of the Lord and the love of her family were her primary concerns in life. She loved having her family all around her and later, when she was gifted with grandchildren they, too, became the focus of her abundant love and prayer.
A life-long teacher by profession, by nature, and by example, Darlene’s genuine love for her Lord Jesus Christ and all his children has left a mark on many in the Archuleta County community and beyond.
Darlene was a long-time member of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, where she served in many capacities over the years; teaching Religious Education to children, Marriage Readiness and Baptism Classes, attending youth retreats and more.
She taught with the local Head Start Program in Pagosa Springs for 37 years
where her love for the children and their families was evident in all that she did. She became part of the tight knit Head Start family whose concerns for the young people was sincere and self-sacrificing.
At local weddings, for family and friends, Darlene, with her husband Chris, were often asked to lead the Wedding March. You would find them planning the “route” and then taking their place before the Bride and Groom to lead them around the room in a joyful march. They must have lead over a hundred Wedding Marches. She loved Joy! She loved sharing joy! She will be deeply missed by her husband, family, and all who knew her.
Darlene is survived by her husband, Chris Gallegos, her constant companion; her sons, Christopher and Jeremy Gallegos; grandchildren Alyssa (Isaiah), Tianna, Rheanna, Gabriel, Angelo, Brylin, and great grandchild, Avila. She is also survived by her mother Beatrice Espinosa; her brother Henry Espinosa (LouJean); sister Georgia Ortega, sister Amy Moreno (Jesus); brother Joseph Espinosa (Carrie); brother Dennis (Dalia); brother George (Jennifer); brother Armando (Melanie); mother-in-”love” Juanita Gallegos; the Gallegos sisters and brothers; and many, many nieces and nephews on both sides. She became both mother and God-mother to many.
Darlene was preceded in death by her first-born daughter Denessa and her son Marcos; and her father George Espinosa and father-in-”love”, Alfredo Gallegos.
A rosary was recited on Sunday, September 29, 2019 at 6:00 p.m.; A Mass was held Monday, September 30, 2019, at 10:00 am; both services were held at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church in Pagosa Springs. Surrounded by her loved ones, burial for Darlene was held at the Juanita Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be sent to Chris Gallegos, PO Box 1373, Pagosa Springs, CO 81147.