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Anita O. Castillo (Plainview)

January 3, 1929 — May 4, 2024

Anita O. Castillo (Plainview)

Anita's Livestream and Recording of her Funeral

Anita O Castillo was born in Skidmore, Texas, to Rafael and Raquel Olivares on January 3, 1929, the 7th of 13 children, 6 siblings older than she and 6 younger.  A curious, determined, and very bright child, her father always told her that 7 was the perfect number. God gave her an extra measure of determination because she would rely on it during the most trying times of her life. Anita was drawn to the Lord at a very young age and aspired to one day go into mission work.  As a teenager, she created a Sunday School for the neighborhood children in Skidmore, and converted her family’s barn every Sunday morning into a Sunday School room for the children. 

Anita attended Skidmore schools and graduated valedictorian of Skidmore High School in 1948, the first Hispanic student to earn that honor.  After graduation, she decided to forego college and went into the work force to help her family. She worked in Beeville, Texas, where she also attended church. The pastors of her church introduced her to their brother and brother-in-law from Floresville, Texas, a handsome young man studying to be a teacher, Jesus Toscano.  They fell in love and married in 1949 and settled in Floresville where they welcomed their first child, Rachel, in 1950. Two years later Jesus Jr. was born, and four years after that a third child, Antonio, joined the family. While married, Jesus earned his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Education from Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos and taught elementary school in Floresville and Cotulla, Texas.  However, after battling nephritis for two years, Jesus succumbed to his illness January 1959. With her strong faith and great determination, Anita relocated her young family from Floresville to Skidmore to be close to her family for help in raising her children and to go to work.  Always industrious, resourceful, and a good money manager, she never accepted federal assistance to provide for her family, but worked many different jobs to provide for her three children. Anita earned her Associate’s Degree from Bee County College in 1974 and also passed the Civil Service federal exams to become e a Social Security Administration Claims Representative, a job she held and advanced in for the next 25 years before retiring in 1987. 

In 1963 after four years as a single parent, she crossed paths with a handsome teenage crush of hers, Jose A. Franco, and he noticed her this time. Jose was a bachelor. They fell in love and married, and whole family went on their honeymoon to San Luis Potosi, Mexico, to visit his relatives and introduce them to his new wife and ready-made family of three!  In 1965, Jose and Anita welcomed a baby girl of their own, JoAnne, named after both her parents. The family lived in Skidmore until 1977 when they moved to Plainview with Anita’s job in Social Security Administration.   She and Jose, now retired, became very active parents in Plainview Schools. They became Band Booster Parents traveling all over the state with the Plainview High School Band where JoAnne was a twirler. Anita was also involved in many civic organizations in Plainview including being secretary of the RSVP Advisory Council Board, serving on the Civic & Social Agency Board, and serving as treasurer of the Financial Committee of Primera Iglesia Bautista where she was also Mother of the Year in 1984.  Sadly, Jose passed away in 1984 from heart disease and Anita, once again leaned on her great God and determination to keep going. Now an empty-nester, since JoAnne had graduated, Anita relocated to Lubbock. She was very involved in her Lubbock church and in 1988 she met a retired widower pastor from Tahoka who shared her passion for church work and missions, Antonio Castillo. They married in 1989 and spent many happy years traveling all over the South Plains, ministering to other shut-in families and sharing the Lord, fulfilling Anita’s passion for missions in the senior years of her life. Great sadness came to the family in 1997 when her youngest son, Tony, passed away after a brief  battle with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. Her faith was tested yet again, but she preserved with the help of her God.

In 2014, Antonio Castillo passed away. Anita, leaning even more on the Lord, continued with her church activities and continued to joyfully participate in her eight grandchildren’s lives whom she loved fiercely and prayed for every single day! They brought her great joy! She enjoyed starting collections of things for all eight of them and always had a collection going for each whether it was Beanie Babies, newly minted quarters of all the states, commemorative Disney glasses, coins of their birth year, etc.  She also sewed fleece blankets and gave all her family and friends fleece blankets insisting that they have one for their home and carry one in their car.  She was passionate about her fleece blankets! Since her stroke in 2020 prohibited her from sewing blankets any more, her family surprised her on her 93rd birthday with a photo book of all the people who had received her blankets over the years for Christmas, birthdays, weddings, births, quincenieras, retirements, graduations, job promotions, etc. Over 100 photos were collected of people of all ages wrapped up in her warm and cozy blankets! The Lord gave her the gift of giving and she lived her life doing just that. Her greatest joy the last few years of her life were her 5 preschool great-grandchildren who spent much time with her while she lived in Virginia. They adored their Grams and spent their days talking to, playing with, scooting her around the house in her wheelchair, and just making her laugh with pure joy!  

Anita is preceded in death by her husbands, Jesus G. Toscano, Jose A. Franco, Antonio Castillo, a son, Antonio Toscano, her parents Rafael and Raquel Olivares, 8 brothers and 2 sisters, and 2 nephews and 1 niece. She is survived by her children: Rachel Harmon and husband David, Jesus Toscano Jr. and wife Marian, JoAnne Franco York, and daughter-in-law Lisa Toscano; grandchildren: Sam Toscano, Lena Toscano, David Harmon Jr and wife Frankie, Tim DeWitt, Alexa Toscano, TJ Toscano, Sarah York Dooley and husband Luke, Angela York Maddell and husband James; great-grandchildren: Olive Toscano, Jack and Everett Dooley, Lila, Leo, and Matthew Maddell; two sisters: Elia Alvarado and Yolanda Silva, and many nephews, nieces, great-nephews and great-nieces.

The family wishes to thank the wonderful servants of hospice service Community Healthcare of Texas, for the excellent care, compassion and love they gave Anita.  In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Community Healthcare of Texas, 6100 Western Place, Ste. 105, Fort Worth, TX 76107.  MHYDE@CHOT.ORG. 817-870-2795 or your favorite charity. 

“I have fought the good fight,

I have finished the race,

I have kept the faith.”

2 Timothy 4:7

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Past Services

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Saturday, June 1, 2024

10:00 - 10:45 am (Central time)

Plainview - Kornerstone Funeral Directors

3605 SW 3rd, Plainview, TX 79072

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Funeral Service

Saturday, June 1, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Central time)

Plainview - Kornerstone Funeral Directors

3605 SW 3rd, Plainview, TX 79072

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