June 16, 1925 – Feb. 7, 2018
Juan R. Texidor, a beloved figure Buffalo's Puerto Rican community and host of the "Ecos Boricanos" radio show, died Feb. 7 in Buffalo General Medical Center after a brief illness. He was 92.
Born in Guayama, Puerto Rico, Mr. Texidor immigrated in 1951 and settled on Buffalo's West Side. He worked for Ford Motor Company for 35 years, but it was his personal outreach to the community and his contributions over the airwaves that his friends remember most.
A founding member of two West Side institutions, the Pucho Olivencia Center and Hispanics United of Buffalo, Mr. Texidor was active in Democratic politics and the announcer at the annual Grease Pole Festival for 46 years.
He was best known as the host of the Spanish language show "Ecos Boricanos," a call-in radio program that brought in community leaders and covered the big issues of the day from the late 1950s to the 1980s, said longtime friend and caregiver Edwin Martinez.
Mr. Texidor was a believer in social justice and helping younger generations appreciate their cultural heritage, Martinez said.
"All his life, what he was fighting for was equality for everyone," Martinez said. "He was a man of great honor and integrity in the community."
Mr. Texidor's radio show, which aired on WJJL 1040 AM, also featured classic salsa and bolero music. He boasted a collection of more than 3,000 records.
Over the course of his life, Mr. Texidor held leadership roles with the Puerto Rican Society for Mutual Help and the Puerto Rican-American Community Association. He also helped teach many local children to read as a volunteer with Literacy Volunteers of Buffalo and Erie County and was a proponent of bilingual education in Buffalo schools.
"Through his lifetime, he probably taught hundreds of kids," said Martinez, whose own children spent plenty of time in Mr. Texidor's home.
Mr. Texidor also supported his favorite charities, particularly Feed the Children, despite living on a fixed income.
"He wrote his last check the week before he died," Martinez said. "That was important to him. He said, 'If I have something, why can't I share it?' "
Mr. Texidor's wife, Isabel Marquez, died in 2006. He is survived by his brothers, Jose and Santiago Rivera. His funeral service was held Feb. 14, which Mayor Byron W. Brown declared as Juan Texidor Day in the City of Buffalo. Mr. Texidor's death and contributions also were recognized by Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz and the Buffalo Common Council.