Marie Leal Vasquez
Marie Leal was born in the middle of the Great Depression, on September 1, 1933, to Samuel Leal, a shop owner, and Sarah Rivera, a homemaker. She was the second of eight children, and their oldest daughter. Marie’s mother named her, Maria del Carmen Leal, on her baptismal certificate. Her legal name is Marie Leal due to the doctor listing her name on the birth certificate as Marie instead of Maria. Marie graduated from W. B. Ray High School. in May 1952. Marie’s father was a mechanic who owned Leal’s Garage. The business provided well for the family.
In 1953, Marie met Arturo at Dr. H. P. Garcia's office. After a short courtship, they were married on October 30, 1953. Early in their marriage, Arturo encouraged Marie to join local organizations. She was a member of the CPA Wives Club, and held office as the treasurer, historian, and president. As a member of the League of Woman Voters, she held office as treasurer, and as a member of the American Legion Auxiliary, Post 248, she held office as the president. As a member of the Central Ladies Auxiliary of the American GI Forum, she was recognized in 1974 for her “service and devotion to the organization.” She was a board member of the Corpus Christi Area Council of Camp Fire Girls,’ and the Corpus Christi Art Museum. She was also a member of each of her children’s school PTAs, and held official positions.
Marie has worked for Nueces County as a Voter Official for over 25 years. She is a devoted Catholic, and has been a Eucharistic Minister at St. Pius X Catholic Church for over 25 years.
Arturo and Marie were married for 56 years. They had seven children, thirteen grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren.