RODRIGUEZ, NORMA C., born 27th of December 1928, aged 91. “Mike” / Mrs. Rod went home to the Lord on the 18th day of September 2020 at Good Shepherd Hospice in Lakeland, FL. She is now reunited with the love of her life and spouse of almost 60 years, Rev. Joe M. Rodriguez (“Cano”/Mr. Rod/Rev. Joe), who passed in 2009. Norma was born in New Orleans, LA while her mother, Mercedes Vargas Castillo Bardales, went into labor while with her father, George Castillo, Sr., on a shrimping trip to New Orleans and was named after the Catholic nun who helped to deliver her, Sr. Normandina. She lived her younger years with her mother and siblings in New York City, NY and then moved to Ybor City, Tampa, Florida where she met Cano at a dance and the rest was history of sacrifice and love for God, each other and their son, Gary. She is survived by her only son, Professor Gary Michael Rodriguez (retired), and his wife, Colette Lynn (Pedregal) Rodriguez. She is also survived by her youngest brother, Rubin Castillo (88) (his wife, Yvette) & many nieces and nephews. Norma taught in the Polk County & Hillsborough County school systems for over 31 years and had a Masters’ Degree in School Administration. She was a brilliant artist and loving mother, who always called Colette the daughter she always wanted. She will be missed by all who knew and loved her. The family would like to give their heartfelt thanks to all those at Good Shepherd Hospice who took such good care of Norma in her final days. They are all Angels on Earth. At Norma’s request there will be a private funeral service due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. There will be a Celebration of Life scheduled after the pandemic has passed for family and friends to gather in remembrance of such a good soul. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Good Shepherd Hospice of Lakeland, FL, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, Disabled American Veterans, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Alzheimer’s Association or St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.
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