The man, the myth, the legend! Men wanted to be him, women wanted to be with him and fish trembled when they heard his name. Joe R. Hernandez, of McQueeney, passed away on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at age 71.
Joe was better known as "J.R." or "Killer" and well known by his signature handlebar moustache. J.R. was born in Cuero, Texas on April 15, 1948 to the late Damacio R. Hernandez, Sr. and the late Natividad "Maria" (Sertuche) Hernandez. He was the 3rd of 10 children. Joe was a graduate of Cuero High School, class of 1967. He began his career with Gary Aircraft as an Aircraft painter in Victoria, Texas, from 1967 to 1970. During that time period, he tested with Southwestern Bell and scored at such a high level, that a Southwestern Bell Executive went to visit him on a rainy Sunday morning and personally offered him a job. He then began his career with Southwestern Bell Telephone Company in 1970 and was known in the Seguin, Lake McQueeney, and Marion areas as "The Telephone Man."
When J.R. wasn't working hard or hardly working, as he would jokingly say, Joe enjoyed living life to the fullest which included many a Jack and Sprite because Coke would give you a hangover. His second favorite drink was Weller's and Mountain Dew. He could play a mean game of pool and in the late 1970s thru 80s, Joe played with the Eight Ball Association for the Riverside Bar in Seguin. They won many championships playing around town.
The nickname "Killer" was earned from shooting the slingshot. One night, after having one too many drinks at a bar, a man bet he couldn't shoot the cigarette butt out of his mouth. Dad proved him wrong and the man lived unscathed. Joe could shoot a dime, nickel, or penny in mid air putting a dent in it. He coordinated Slingshot tournaments in the late 70s/early 80s in Seguin at the fairgrounds, placing many a times. At one point in the late 70s, he was ranked 3rd in the world and 1st in the State of Texas.
On the weekends, he could be found fishing, hunting, throwing darts, washers and horseshoes. He participated in many tournaments and competitions all over the state of Texas with his little brother Jessie. They won many times.
At work, he was actively involved with the Communication Workers of America (CWA) and always fought to do right by his coworkers. As Chief Steward for VP1, he enjoyed hosting meetings at his house to barbecue for everyone.
He always carried dice in his pocket and would tell everyone "you want to shoot for it?" whenever there was a disagreement. Dad was a card shark at many a poker game but particularly had a gifted talent for reading people's poker faces and gestures winning him many poker pots! He kept his poker winnings in a Crown Royal bag and always had it readily available when we had family gatherings.
After 32 long years of service in 2002 with MaBell, he hung up his climbing belt and gaffs as a Customer Service Technician. In his retirement years, he enjoyed playing bingo and pull tabs at various bingo halls. Because everyone was on "his time" now, he enjoyed many morning breakfasts at Pica Taco.
He always loved barbecuing for his family and friends at birthday celebrations and family gatherings. Joe and his little brother, Jessie, were always debating over whose beans were the best, but Joe's were better! He made a mean pot of beans! Joe loved to tell stories. And you could be sure 50[%] of every story was true. You just never knew which 50[%].
He got married when he was 21, but it didn't last. However, his children continue to tell the stories of how much J.R. liked to throw jabs at his ex. His children are: Daughter Becky Hernandez Valderrama and husband Timothy, Tina Hernandez-Johnson and husband Ken, Joey Hernandez and wife Valarie.
He was preceded in death by his loving parents and Brother Johnny Hernandez and Grandson Joey Hernandez.
He had a fourth child, daughter Laurenn Hernandez, with his lifelong love, Rosemary Campos. His siblings are: Gloria Millsap, Damacio Hernandez Jr (Margie), Dora Carrisalez (Henry), Maria De Los Santos (Refugio), Guadalupe Hernandez (Ivonne), Jessie Hernandez (Elizabeth), Theresa H. Gonzales (Chris), and Carmen H. Veliz (Tacho). He had eight grandchildren: Kennedy, Hannah, Jaya, Jazna, Mackenzie, Jerric, Carmella, JayRyan, and numerous Nieces and Nephews
Active Pallbearers are: Joey Hernandez, Jessie Hernandez, Guadalupe Hernandez, Timothy C. Valderrama, Kennedy P. Johnson Sr, Kennedy P. Johnson Jr, and Anastacio "Tacho" Veliz
Honorary Pallbearers are: Damacio Hernandez Jr, Andy Trevino, Arthur M. Campos, Abel Carrillo, and Gabriel Garcia.
Visitation will be held at the Palmer Mortuary Chapel on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019 from 5 to 8 p.m. with a rosary to be recited at 7 p.m. The Funeral Service will be held at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church on Wednesday, May 8, 2019 at 10 a.m. services will conclude at the church.