Jose M. Rodriguez-Hernandez of Columbia, SC passed away Wednesday, March 27, 2019 at the age of 82. Born August 3, 1936 in Carolina, Puerto Rico, Jose was the son of the late Juan Rodriguez and Antonia Hernandez.
Jose was married for 59 years to his late wife Luz Maria Ramirez. Jose and Luz had two children: the late Jose Rodriguez, Jr. and Luz Maria Medina. Jose is also survived by two granddaughters, Lisa M. Williams (Chris) and Mary C. Medina (Michael), daughters of Luz Medina, and two great grandchildren, Logan A. Williams and A. Reese Williams.
Jose joined the National Guard of Puerto Rico at a young age and directly after enlisted in the U.S. Army. He and Luz traveled across the world for his military service. He rose to the rank of Master Sergeant and dedicated nearly 23 years of service. Jose was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for his service in Vietnam. After retiring from his military service, Jose and Luz resided in New Jersey for 21 years before moving down to South Carolina to be near their daughter and grandchildren.
Jose loved being around people and never met a stranger. He enjoyed playing games of strategy including checkers, chess, and especially dominoes. In recent years, he enjoyed watching reruns of M*A*S*H as he was able to reflect on his time in Korea. He was a man that loved a good steak, glass of wine and cigar. Jose and Luz took care of many cats over the years, and in his later years, Jose found companionship with his dogs: Spikey, Peanut, Lola and Scooter.
Jose was extremely proud of his granddaughters for their academic accomplishments but always reminded them to remember their “roots”. He enjoyed playing chess with his great-grandson Logan and teaching his great grand-daughter a fun game called “cantitocantito,” which always made her giggle. And every New Year, Jose enjoyed trying to trick his family with a joke about añoviejo.
Jose was predeceased by his brother Juan and is survived by his brother Miguel and sisters Carmen and Aida.