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Rachel Mendez
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Rachel Mendez

KEARNEY — Rachel G. Mendez, 87, of Kearney, formerly of Wood River, died Sunday, July 12, 2020, at the CHI Health Good Samaritan in Kearney.

Services are 10:30 a.m. Friday at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Wood River with the Rev. Jorge Canela officiating.

Burial will follow in Westlawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Grand Island.

Visitation is 5-7 p.m. Thursday at St. Mary’s Catholic Church with family and friends speaking in remembrance of Rachel at 6:30 p.m. with the rosary following at 7 p.m. Due to COVID-19 concerns attendees will be required to wear masks and asked to maintain social distancing.

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Rachel was born on Aug. 17, 1932, in Grand Island to Francisco Guerrero and Ernestina Cantu. She grew up in Grand Island and received her education through the eighth grade at Stolley Park Elementary.

She met the love of her life, Vincent M. Mendez, in the potato fields where she was a potato picker and he was a potato loader. They married on Aug. 17, 1949, in Grand Island and lived together there and various other towns before settling down in Wood River. Over the years, she worked hard to help support her family in the potato and beet fields, in an onion plant, at the Cornhusker Army Ammunition Plant during the Vietnam War, and at the Good Samaritan Society in Wood River before she retired. She attended church at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Wood River, and she enjoyed cooking for her family, playing games with her neighbors, gardening and embroidery. In her younger days, she liked to bowl, play softball and dance.

Survivors include her husband, Vincent M. Mendez; her sons, Vincent Mendez Jr. and Robert Mendez; and her daughter, Olivia Molina; eight grandchildren; and 20 great-grandchildren.

She was preceded in death by her parents Francisco Guerrero and Ernestina Cantu; her brothers, John and Marion Guerrero; sisters, Gabina Mendez, Flora Roman and Frances Salinas; granddaughter, Serita Gamez; and her great-granddaughter, Lauryn Poff.

Memorials are suggested to Concrete Cares of Nebraska and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Visit www.apfelfuneralhome.com to leave condolences online.

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