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Juan Javier Moreno


John (Juan) Xavier Moreno, 71, departed this world surrounded by family on Ash Wednesday March 2, 2022, in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  A funeral service will be held at his beloved Basilica of SteAnne de Detroit, MI, on Monday March 7th at 9:30am.

John was born in 1950 to Fransisco and Juanita Moreno.  John was always devoted to his family and Catholic faith.  Consistent with his faith and personal values, he was driven by his strong sense of community, humility, perseverance, and integrity.  These values inspired his pursuit of higher education to include a master’s degree in bilingual education.  Subsequently, John touched the lives of thousands of children as a teacher at Southwest Detroit Schools including: Harms, O.W. Holmes, Maybury, McKinstry, and Newberry.  He also worked at the Acosta Center’s Migrant Program.  He went on to become an administrator at the Detroit Public School Central Office as a Language Arts Specialist as well as Bilingual Administrator in the Office of Bilingual Education.  Finally, he was the first Principal at Roberto Clemente from 2002-2005.

After his retirement, John continued his love of education by taking a variety of classes in writing. His sharp wit, creativity, sense of humor, and love of family are forever captured in his published story, “The Hole in the Wall: A Moreno Brothers Saga.”  In addition to being a talented writer, he was also an avid photographer and was known for his stunning photos with superimposed inspirational quotes or scriptures.  He was a highly spiritual person with a passion for nature, birds, and all living creatures including his beloved dogs: Gracie and Peaches.  He enjoyed all of life’s seasons, but his favorite was fall.  Perhaps most importantly, John loved his family and friends beyond measure.  He had special and unique relationships with all those dear to him.  John cared deeply about the well-being of others.  One could easily lose track of time while engaged in deep conversation with him. He truly left a legacy that will live on through the many lives that he touched.

He is survived by his partner, Robert Hoffius; brothers, Fransisco and Tony Moreno; sisters, Merie Saxby (Rick) and Gracie Martinez (José); nieces and nephews, Cassandra Rosado, Vanessa McCauley, Dyani Saxby, Fransisco Moreno, Ricky Saxby, Philip Saxby, Chelsea Moreno-Moore, José Martinez Jr., Whitney Moreno, Alicia Martinez, Sarah Martinez; many beloved grandnieces and nephews including Mia Rosado, Jatin McCauley, Jaxon McCauley, Nadia Evans, Antonio Moreno, Lilly Saxby, Iris Saxby, Christian Saxby, Fransisco “Allende” Moreno, and Anwen Saxby-Shollenbarger; and cousins.

He is now reunited with his parents Fransisco and Juanita Moreno, brother Jesse Moreno, and sister-in-law, Cynthia Moreno.

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Mass of Christian Burial

 Basilica of SteAnne de Detroit

 Monday March 7th at 9:30am

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10 Responses

  1. To my son Robert Hoffius and Juan Moreno Family my deepest thoughts. And Prayers for loss of your Friend and Brother Juan ,He will be greatly missed.
    Love Gleda M Royse

  2. Stan and I were so happy when you and Robert lived in our neighborhood, Juan. Everything about you was beautiful and exuded love — your yard and flowers, as well as your spirit, and your heart. We enjoyed playing scrabble with you occasionally, and were lifted by our conversations – we particularly liked hearing about your family and upbringing that you were so proud of, about your nieces, your teaching days in Detroit. Your dedication to your religion was of utmost importance, as we observed how it guided your moral compass – with love, and integrity. We were sorry when you moved away, and are so grateful that our friendship continued after your move to Ada. We will miss you, Juan Javier.

    We are terribly sorry it will not be possible for us to attend your funeral, as we will be attending another one in Detroit at same time.

  3. Oh what memories I have of John. Always, always a gentle soul with an incredible smile and spiritual persona. He shall always remain in my heart as a blessing in my life and on this earth. Rest in Peac John. May your memory be a blessing.

  4. Our condolences to Robert, Fransisco, Tony, Merie, and Gracie in this most difficult time. Prayers for the soul of our departed cousin, from the Telles Family.

  5. John was my friend since we met in school in the 1950’s. Ever thoughtful, considerate and giving, he enriched our lives. His memory is blessed. Alex Silva

  6. I remember John asking me to come to Mass with him at St. Bonaventure Monastery in the mid-eighties to hear Fr. Bob Skeris preach. That Mass drew me in and I’ve been attending ever since. I’ve met a lot of wonderful people, including friars since then and am thankful to John for introducing me.
    I also recall fajita parties he hosted at his house on Braille on the west side of Detroit and then again on Pierson. His mother made the best Spanish rice I had ever eaten and his fajitas were loved by all. He went away one weekend and asked me to watch his dog, Peaches (Chata). His parents lived down the street, luckily for me, when I took Chata for a walk and left the house keys inside. I sheepishly went down and asked his dad to let me in, thinking he must think I’m a real nut. He was very supportive and laughed. I went to his 50th birthday party at his sister, Gracie’s, and it’s hard to believe that was 20+ years ago.
    I was happy he stayed in Detroit, when he moved to the east side; but saddened when he chose to move away to Colorado. That was short-lived and I was happy to have him back in Michigan. Through the years we’ve had lots of laughs and I will surely miss him. Dennis

  7. My heartfelt condolences to John’s family! He had a heart of gold, the kindest soul and wisdom beyond measure. “If life went on the same without the presence of John, we could only conclude that his life made no contribution. The fact that John left behind a place that cannot be filled, is the highest tribute to him. Life can be the same after a trinket has been lost, but never after the loss of a treasure!” Rest in peace, John!

  8. To Juan’s Family: I was so saddened to hear about Juan’s passing. I am sending my love & prayers to you at this difficult time. I was blessed to have known Juan. When he lived in Pueblo, Co., he & I enjoyed our many walks on the Riverwalk and our many conversations which were always enlightening and sometimes pretty funny. He had a great sense of humor. We laughed alot and I missed that once he moved back to Michigan. I don’t know if you remember me or not. I met some of you when my brother Ed (Perry) and I came to Michigan one time. I know Juan is in Heaven where God will take care of him. Hugs to you all. Jan Coffee


  10. I am so deeply sorry to learn of Juan’s passing. I send my sincere and heartfelt condolences to Robert, Francisco, Tony, Merie, Gracie, his entire family, and all who knew and loved him. I will miss Juan more than words can express and my life will forever be different and better because of him. Please know of my continued prayers for each of you. May the peace of the Son of Peace fill each of you now and forever.

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Make a Contribution

Mass of Christian Burial

 Basilica of SteAnne de Detroit

 Monday March 7th at 9:30am