Gilberto "Gil" Zapata, 70, of Salem died Friday, Oct. 5, 2007, surrounded by family members.

Born to Luciano and Regina Zapata in Robstown, he married Dolores Salas on Aug. 27, 1954: they shared 53 years together. Gil and Dolores moved to Oregon in 1963, where they raised six children.

He worked for Green Villa Farms for several years, holding various positions. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, Gil and Dolores co-owned and managed a restaurant in Independence. Before retiring, Gil performed custodial work at Chemeketa Community College.

Some of his hobbies included hat and T-shirt silk screening, and re-upholstering furniture in his workshop for family and friends. Gil enjoyed camping, playing pool, family gatherings, and taking his wife dancing with best friends, Richard and Jackie. Gil was also a longtime member of the Keizer Eagles and the Molalla Moose Lodge.

He is survived by his wife, Dolores; sister, Julia Zavala of Salem; children, Sobeida and Dave Green of Florida, Dalia and Wenceslao Fernandez, Robert and Florencia Zapata, Hubert Zapata, and Albert Zapata, all of Salem, and Gilbert Jr. and Jeannie Zapata of Oregon City; 13 grandchildren; and six great grandchildren.

A Rosary was held at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 9, at Restlawn Funeral Home. A memorial service was held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 10, at Restlawn Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Gil's name to Odyssey Hospice, 8625 SW Cascade Ave. #500, Beaverton, OR 97008.

Restlawn Funeral Home