FUNERAL SERVICES: 10:00 A.M. Thursday, January 5, 2017, at Comanche Funeral Home Chapel.
ROSARY: Rosary will be at 6:30 P.M. on Wednesday January 4, at Comanche Funeral Home Chapel.
VISITATION: Family will receive friends from 7:00 P.M. until 8:30 P.M. following the Rosary.
Joey Gabriel Rivera, age 37, passed away on Tuesday, January 3, 2017, in Brownwood, Texas.
He was born on January 19, 1979 in Slaton, Texas, the son of Manuel and Maria Rivera. His biological mother was Maria Elena Castaneda with whom he later formed a relationship before her passing due to breast cancer on December 19, 1994. Joey was a beautiful person with a great love for his family. He worked tirelessly to provide for his immediate family, as well as provide a home for his parents. He was mechanically inclined and could build just about anything. He worked on cars and was the family handy man. He remodeled houses and would do just about anything for anyone he loved. He dabbled in wood working with his wife Nicole during their brief business partnership as River A Rustic, a brand he created. They were blessed to meet and interact with many people in their community during this time of creative expression. He, with help from fellow church member Adam Gutierrez, constructed the nativity scene which resides at the square during the Christmas season. He was an avid fishermen, when time allowed. Joey was a talented artist and could draw almost anything. He served briefly in the United States Navy with dreams of being a Navy Seal. He was blessed with many gifts and put 100% effort into everything he did. He amazed us all by his stamina and enduring patience. He loved his children. His family will cherish memories of family games nights, trips to the movies, and every blessed moment in between. He loved roller coasters, thrill rides, good food, cooking out, Lonesome Dove, Johnny Cash, and his facial hair.
Joey was employed at Kohler Company in Brownwood, Texas for twelve years. He worked his way up to lead man and his co-workers can tell you stories of how efficient and intelligent he was while working in the Maintenance Department. Few could keep up and he had no problem pushing everyone to be the best they could be. He left that legacy with his wife and hopefully it will manifest itself in their children. Early Tuesday morning the world lost an old soul at a young age. Joey held ideas and standards not practiced or appreciated by many in today’s society. His presence was valuable, he was dearly loved, and he made a difference on this planet. One of the signs he and his wife made for one of their daughters read, “Believe there is good in the world, BE THE GOOD.” He lived that motto by loving and helping others that crossed his path. He had a heart for the homeless and broken people of this world and he taught his family to be thankful and work for everything they have. He took pride in being a provider and was a member of Mount Pleasant Baptist Church where he dressed as an Israelite during Vacation Bible School, as well as making photo boards for children to take pictures in. He occasionally helped with Youth nights. When Joey smiled it was contagious. He was a handsome man with a gentle spirit and he will be deeply missed and never forgotten. He leaves a legacy in the hearts of those who appreciated him.
He is survived by his wife, Nicole Rivera and children, Joseph, Autumn, Gabi, and Regan, all of Comanche; parents, Manuel and Maria Rivera, of Comanche; father-in-law Matt Lopez of Comanche; sisters: Jenny Rogers, Leticia Maldonado, Janie Gonzales, Petra Sanchez, and Jessica Castaneda; brothers, Juan Castaneda and Joshua Aguilar, as well as their spouses and children, most of whom reside in the Lubbock area; twenty-two nieces and nephews; six great-nieces and great-nephews. He is also survived by sister-in-law Jennifer Kidwell and her husband Brandon and nephews Danny and Ryan Lopez; brother-in-law, Danny Lopez of Brownwood; and sister-in-law, Rebecca Lopez and husband Tyler Thompson of Stephenville. He was preceded in death by his mother-in-law, Joann Lopez.