José Manuel “Baby” Sanchez-Rosario, our beloved husband, father, brother, and friend, passed away at his home in Taylorsville, Utah on September 22, 2020, at age 70. He was born October 5, 1949, in Bingham Canyon, Utah, in the small town of Dinkeyville to Felix Sanchez-Rosario and Natividad Martinez Viera, both from Puerto Rico. He felt blessed to be a Puerto Rican American and loved his Puerto Rican heritage. On April 23, 1986, married his sweetheart, Nancy L. Matthews, in the Salt Lake Temple. José loved his parents, brothers and sisters, and his wife and children and constantly showed that love by his guidance and support.
José was a very meticulous and organized person and a very stylish dresser. He was a great exercise enthusiast—he loved body building, swimming, speed walking, and exercise of any kind. He loved music of all kinds and, above all, he loved to dance. He was an excellent dancer, with phenomenal rhythm, especially when he danced the music of Puerto Rico and other Latin rhythms.
José had a strong testimony of our Father in Heaven and the Savior, Jesus Christ. He was an adult convert to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a member for 50 years. He wholeheartedly believed in the gospel and teachings of Christ, including: “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.” He took every opportunity to teach love for the Savior and our Father in Heaven, and lived by the principles he taught others. He explained and taught the gospel well, including teaching in Sunday School, Young Men, and priesthood groups and quorums. He served as ward mission leader, served stake missions in two stakes, and served in a Stake mission presidency. He served in three bishoprics and was a temple worker and coordinator in the Jordan River Utah Temple for a number of years.
José was a person of integrity, hard work, commitment, and self-discipline, and he spent time instilling these qualities in his family. He overcame a lot of adversity and learned early that life was often a battle against a society filled with discrimination, bigotry, greed, and complacency. Because he had to fight for himself, he also became an enthusiastic and tireless advocate for people who normally don’t have a voice in society and he dedicated his life to serving others. He believed in human dignity, free will, and that everyone has a right to be treated equally as a human being and child of our Father in Heaven. He was a great mentor to anyone who sought his counsel or help. He worked tirelessly with the disadvantaged and homeless communities helping individuals find food, shelter, rehab programs, housing, jobs and a continuing support system. He was always donating time and funding to a variety of humanitarian efforts. At every opportunity, he fought for a more responsible society and for making positive attitudinal and societal changes to relieve human suffering and increase equality for all members of the human race.
José is survived by his wife Nancy, children Sandra (Steven) Jensen, Adrian Sanchez, Joseph Sanchez, and Elaina Sanchez, and siblings Carmen (Hector) Cintron, José Lozano, Heriberto “Pino” Lozano, Maria Beauchamp, and Marta Beauchamp.
A visitation will be held Wednesday, September 30, from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at Larkin Sunset Gardens at 1950 E. 10600 South. A private family service will be held October 1, by invitation, with viewing from 12:00-12:45 pm followed by funeral services at 1:00 pm. Masks and social distancing are required at all times.