Funeral Mass for Leonor Basconcillo Cruz will be celebrated at 11 a.m. Friday, April 25, at Saint Augustine’s Catholic Church, with the Rev. Ron Belisle, celebrant. Visitation will be at Burley Funeral Chapel Thursday, April 24, from noon until 5 p.m. and at Saint Augustine’s Church from 6 p.m. through the Rosary.
A private family inurnment of ashes will be held at Maple Leaf Cemetery Saturday, April 26. Leonor will be laid to rest next to her husband, Agustin. Nightly Rosaries are said at 7 p.m. at Saint Augustine’s. Saturday and Sunday locations will be announced.
Leonor Basconcillo Cruz, 81, died at Whidbey General Hospital on Easter Sunday, April 20, due to complications from a stroke, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma cancer and cold agglutena. She was born on New Year’s Day, at the stroke of midnight, on Jan. 1, 1922, in Pasay City, Rizal Province, Philippines, to Vicente and Isidra Rodriguez Basconcillo. She attended the School of Commerce at the Far Eastern University, Manila, Philippine Islands. She served on the student council at her school as ASB President, and while she was addressing her fellow students during a Mother’s Day assembly, the announcement came suddenly that war had been declared, abruptly ending her speech.
During the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II, Leonor participated in the Philippine Liberation Underground as a messenger to American Armed Forces. In 1945, after the war, she met Agustin Royos Cruz of Agana, Guam, and later married him on Dec. 20, 1945. Leonor, with her son, Robert, boarded the U.S.S. General Mann in 1951 and headed for the United States. She joined her husband in San Francisco where Agustin was stationed with the U.S. Naval Service in the Bay Area. The couple lived there from 1951 through 1958. Leonor was employed as an IBM keypunch operator for two years, before moving to Oak Harbor, due to her husband’s change of military orders, in August 1958, to Whidbey Island Naval Air Station. She was employed at the Navy Exchange Dry Cleaners, Seaplane Base, for 10 years. Oak Harbor remained her home until her death.
Leonor was proceeded in death by her husband, Agustin Cruz, Aug. 17, 2002; their first son, Edward Cruz; her parents and her brothers, Marciano and Bienvenido Basconcillo. She was a member of St. Augustine’s Catholic Church. She was the co-founder and life-long member of the Filipino-American Association of Oak Harbor, where she held the offices of vice-president, treasurer and parliamentarian.
She loved to sew and crochet. Physical fitness was important to her. Leonor enjoyed jumping rope and riding the stationary bike, as well as walking five miles a day, even in recent years. She loved gardening as well, and enjoyed mowing the lawn on her rider mower, affectionately nicknamed “the Cadillac.”
Leonor Cruz is survived by her son, Robert Cruz, San Francisco; her daughter, Lorraine Cruz Harmon and son-in-law, Joel Harmon of Oak Harbor; and her youngest, Michael Cruz of Colma – Daly City, Calif.; two grandchildren, Jennifer Harmon and husband, Justin Stambaugh of College Park, Md., and Joel Allen Harmon II of Seattle. She is also survived by her niece, Flor Basconcillo Guerke (daughter of Bienvenido Basconcillo), San Diego, Calif.
Funeral arrangements are by Burley Funeral Chapel. Memorials may be made to the non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma Research Foundation of the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 102454, Atlanta, GA 30368-2454.