Vail Daily obituary: Phil ‘Wedja’ Pena, 1920–2013 |

Vail Daily obituary: Phil ‘Wedja’ Pena, 1920–2013

Phil “Wedja” Pena, 93, of Gypsum, passed away at his home on Thursday. He was born on May 14, 1920, in Petaca, N.M., to Alfredo and Francisca (Ortiz) Pena. He married Felicita “Lee” (Barela) Pena in 1942 in Petaca. She preceded him in death.

Phil was a miner at the Gilman Mine. He enjoyed playing cards, cooking, dancing, playing any and all musical instruments, telling jokes, watching “The Price Is Right” and praying. He loved spending time with his family.

Phil is survived by his daughter Edna Baca, of Minturn; granddaughter and caretaker, Lucille Baca, of Gypsum; 13 grandchildren; 38 great-grandchildren; 16 great-great-grandchildren with 2 more on the way; sister Anita Pena; and half-sister, Loyola Benavidez. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife; daughter Shirley Archuleta; sons, Randy Archuleta and Adelaido Pena; son-in-law, Enrique Baca; grandson Johnny Archuleta; great-great-grandson Urijah Baca; brothers, Augustine Pena, Filigonio Pena, Frank Ortiz and Cristobal Griego; and sister Adelaida Pena Montoya.

A visitation will be held today at Saint Patrick Parish in Minturn from 4:30 to 5 p.m., with a rosary following at 5 p.m. A reception will follow the rosary at the Baca family home. A second rosary service will be held at 1 p.m. on Wednesday in Petaca, N.M., at the Petaca Catholic Church, with a graveside service to follow at the Petaca Catholic Cemetery. A reception will follow the burial.

For information on contributions or floral arrangements, please contact Daisy Baca at 970-390–7739. Bailey-Kent Funeral Home, of Leadville, and DeVargas Funeral Home, of Espanola, N.M., are assisting the family with arrangements. To send a condolence to Pena’s family, please visit

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