Connie “Consuelo” Chavez Brickner, 86 of Valparaiso, IN, formerly of Las Cruces, NM, passed away peacefully with her son and daughter by her side, on Saturday, December 3, 2022. She was born October 6, 1936, in Solomonville, AZ to Francisco and Enriqueta (Membrilla) Chavez. Connie received her bachelor’s degree in education from Western New Mexico University, where she was a member of the Blue Key Honor Society. She began her teaching career at Hobart High School, and then briefly worked at Gibson Guitar Co. in Kalamazoo, MI, where Elvis Presley had his guitars made. She returned to teaching at South Haven Elementary School, where she led the music programs and taught her own children in her classroom. A cross-country move took Connie to Zia Middle School in Las Cruces, NM, where she was head of cheerleading and dance, and from which she retired in 1998.
Teaching was Connie’s gift and when she was in her classroom, she was at her best. She had a heart for service and learning, and touched the lives of over 10,000 students over the span of her career. Connie loved her students, and received many letter of appreciation from students over the years. Connie was also musically inclined as a gifted singer and French Horn player. She was part of the singing group, Voz Vaqueros and the Las Cruces Community Choir, which traveled to NYC and Austria to perform. Connie will be remembered as a compassionate and dedicated educator, but also as a loving and devoted mom, and grandma, who will be dearly missed.
Connie is survived by her children: Michael (Amy) Brickner and Teresa Pavy, both of Valparaiso, IN; grandchildren: Zoe and Michael Brickner; former spouse, Marvin Brickner of Valparaiso, IN; and siblings: Maggie Diaz, Frank Chavez, Alice Lorenson, Art Chavez, and Cristina Ortega; along with many loving nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; brother, Luis Chavez; and sisters: Ama Maese and Lucy Chavez.
Connie came to know the Lord and accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior. She is now free from pain and physical limitations and celebrating in Heaven with the Lord and her friends and family who went before her.
A private family service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Spirit of Hidalgo, 205 Shakespeare St., Lordsburg, NM 88045.
I am so very sorry for the loss of your mother. She was a lovely woman who I am sure will be missed by many. We lived down the street from your family on La Honda Drive many, many years ago. Sending prayers for your family during this difficult time. Rest in Peace Connie. -Angel Zromkoski