Cover photo for Dolores Jaramillo Martinez's Obituary
1939 Dolores 2023

Dolores Jaramillo Martinez

January 9, 1939 — March 30, 2023

Dolores Jaramillo Martinez, died peacefully Thursday, March 30, 2023, at age 84. Dolores was born in Albuquerque in 1939, a descendent of the first Jaramillo to settle in New Mexico in 1598. She was the eighth of nine children. Her father, Demetrio, was a butcher. Her biological mother, Lucia Sanchez died when Dolores was six years old. Her father later married Lucia Sanchez ("Lucy") who raised her, and whom Dolores and her siblings always lovingly called "mother." Before marrying Demetrio, Lucy, was a teacher-and at one time a principal-in a number of small New Mexico villages. Dolores attended Saint Mary's Catholic School, spent one year at Loretto Academy in Santa Fe, and graduated from Saint Vincent Academy with honors.

Dolores met her husband, Ted F. Martinez at the Saint Thomas Aquinas Newman Center, while both were attending the University of New Mexico (UNM). They married in 1959 and had three children, Demetria Louise, Elena Marie and Richard Dominic.

After some breaks in her college education to have her three children, Dolores graduated from UNM in 1969. While at UNM, she specialized in the burgeoning field of Early Childhood Education, where she studied under early childhood pioneers, Lenore Wolfe and Mary Ann Binford. They and other instructors fueled Dolores's passion for reaching children in the earliest stages of development—particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

After graduating from UNM, she then embarked upon a career specializing in Early Childhood Education that spanned over 25 years. She was known for her innovative work in the field, which included her role as the founding Curriculum Director at A Child's Garden at First Presbyterian Church. A 2011 newsletter From a Child's Garden, celebrating the school's 40th year, described Dolores and the other teachers as "so attuned to the lives of young children that even 40 years later their notions about best practices for educating young children hold up to current research." The newsletter describes the curriculum as "a wonderful curriculum designed by Dolores Martinez which remains the basis for the curriculum today."

Dolores's own children have fond memories of going with their mom on weekends to help set up her classroom. Her carefully designed "interest centers" created an atmosphere in which children learned as they played, developing socially, emotionally, and intellectually. News of her innovative work spread; others came to observe her classroom, including students from UNM's College of Education.

Dolores went on to teach with Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) after kindergartens were made universal in the state of New Mexico. She worked with a diverse student body during her years with APS. Dolores taught in some of the first classrooms that emerged from the Model Cities Program established under the Johnson Administration. She made regular home visits, reaching out to children's families-an effort that was especially meaningful to refugee families who came to the United States in the wake of the Vietnam War. In 1991 Dolores was named APS Employee of the Year.

Dolores retired when she became a grandmother to Rachel Dolores, Benjamin Theodore and David Demetrio. Always a teacher, the family joked that she wrote lesson plans for her activities with her grandchildren. In her retirement, Dolores was also an avid volunteer. She volunteered with Presbyterian Hospital's Pediatric Unit, with Hospice Care, and with Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic Church and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe. As a Hospice Care volunteer, Dolores visited those who were nearing the end of their lives. For Saint Charles Borromeo Catholic Church and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, she developed and gave workshops on caregiving. In 2008, Mayor Martin Chavez named Dolores the City's Caregiver of the Year.

As Dolores's health declined including as a result of Alzheimer's Disease, her loving husband, Ted F. Martinez, with the help of Home Instead caregivers and family, cared for Dolores at home until her death. Despite the progression of Alzheimer's Disease, she continued to know her husband, children and grandchildren, and constantly expressed her gratitude and love for them. She remained up to her death a deeply spiritual person and Comforter in Chief to those around her.

Dolores is survived by her husband of 63 years, Ted F. Martinez; children, Demetria Martinez (Camilla Bustamante), Elena Martinez Gallegos (Daniel J. Gallegos, Jr.) and Dominic Martinez (Susie Trujillo); grandchildren, Rachel Dolores Gallegos, Benjamin Theodore Martinez, and David Demetrio Martinez; her siblings, Rosalie Gabaldon and Ernest Jaramillo; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents, Demetrio and Lucia Jaramillo; her stepmother, Lucy Jaramillo; her brothers, Walter, Herman, Junior, and Sam Jaramillo; and her sisters, Adeline Garcia and Emma Gonzales.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to The Dolores Jaramillo Martinez Endowed Scholarship (610615) at UNM,, or The Ted and Dolores Martinez Scholarship Endowment at the CNM Foundation, .

A Memorial Mass will be held Tuesday, April 25, 2023, 9:00 a.m., at Holy Family Catholic Church, 562 Atrisco Dr. SW. A Reception will follow in the Parish Hall. A Graveside Service will be held Wednesday, April 26, 2023, 1:30 p.m., at Santa Fe National Cemetery.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Dolores Jaramillo Martinez, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Mass

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Starts at 9:00 am (Mountain time)

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Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Starts at 10:30 am (Mountain time)

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Graveside Service

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Starts at 1:30 pm (Mountain time)

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