It is with great sadness that the family of Ron Cardoza, announces his passing at home in Zellwood, Florida, at the age of 77, surrounded by his loving family on Aug. 31, 2020. He was born Nov. 5, 1942 in Lompoc to Edward James Cardoza and Margaret Rose (Machado) Cardoza.
Ron will be lovingly remembered by his wife Janie of 40 years and his children Jim (Joann), Shay, Toni and Amy (Brian). Ron will also be fondly remembered by his five grandchildren and six great-grandchildren; and sisters Judy (Jim) and Terrie (Patti).
He was raised on a farm in the Central Coast of California with his two sisters Judy Lundberg Wafer and Terrie Cardoza. On the farm is where he learned his work ethic. He grew up in a very close Portuguese family. All four grandparents were descendants from Pico, Azores Islands. He was very proud of his heritage and learned early that honesty and loyalty were values that he would carry with him throughout his entire life.
He began his education at Artesia Elementary School, a one room schoolhouse next to the farm. Then it was off to town where he attended Lompoc Junior High and graduated from Lompoc High School in 1960. That same year the family moved their farming operation, 25 miles north to Santa Maria.
Searching for his future he decided to join the United States Air Force in 1961 and served until 1965. His last service was at McCoy Air Force Base in Orlando, Florida. With encouragement from his father, he returned to California to give farming a go.
One of his hardest decisions was, after a year, to inform his Dad that farming just was not for him. He returned to Central Florida, working construction for a number of years.
In 1976 with partners, he started Petroleum Equipment Contractors, Inc. He later merged with longtime friend Ken Tynan forming Power and Petroleum Systems. Selling the company, he began a new venture in 1997 with longtime friends Dick Buchholz and Ben Bathke by creating Petroleum Equipment Construction, Inc.
He was known by all as the hardest working man. Values that he learned in his years on the farm were carried throughout his life.
Upon retiring he traveled in his motorhome around the states and taking trips to his birthplace of California. It was always a celebration for his family when he would visit. Extended family of aunts, uncles, cousins and his dear friends would gather to celebrate that Ronnie was coming home.
One of his most memorable trips was in 2013 when he traveled to Pico, Azores Islands with his sisters and family. They traced their roots back and visited the homes where his grandparents were born. As kids growing up, he was proud of where he came from and now, he could touch the ground of where it all began.
He never met a stranger. Friends and family remember him as the guy with a great sense of humor and the one who would give you the shirt off his back if you needed help.
A special thank you to the Vitas team who provided exceptional extended care to Ron and his family.
It was so important to him that Janie and his kids were happy and understand …
“When tomorrow starts without me, please try to understand.
That an angel came and called my name, and took me by the hand;
The angel said my place was ready,
In Heaven far above,
And that I’d have to leave behind all those I dearly love.
But when I walked through Heaven’s Gates,
I felt so much at home,
For God looked down, smiled at me,
And told me ‘Welcome Home.’
So when tomorrow starts without me,
Don’t think we’re far apart,
For every time you think of me,
I’m right there in your heart.”
The family invites you to a graveside service that will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Nov. 13 at the Santa Maria Cemetery, 1501 S. College Drive, with Father Ed Jalbert presiding.
Memorial donations in memory of Ron may be made to VTC Enterprises or the charity of your choice.
To leave a condolence for the family visit www.dudleyhoffmanmortuary.com.