Taking turns speaking, six women showed their support for the late former associate city judge, mayor and council member, retired Colonel Raul Villaronga, at Tuesday’s city council workshop.
The women, including the late judge’s wife of 68 years, Julia Villaronga, have asked the town council to pass a resolution to name the Killeen Town Court building in honor of Raul Villaronga.
In total, speakers touched on everything from Villaronga’s three terms as mayor to his Puerto Rican heritage.
Since arriving in the 1980s, Villaronga has established himself as a member of the Killeen community, helping to establish the Youth Advisory Committee in 1993 and securing the location of the Central State Veterans Cemetery. of Texas, said Julia Villaronga. The retired Army colonel also hosted a local class for those seeking to become US citizens.
Villaronga died on March 20 at the age of 82. He was born on April 1, 1938 in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
According to Julia Villaronga, the former mayor was also responsible for bringing city council meetings to the television set and securing Texas A&M University-Central Texas in Killeen.
“There are so many other things he’s done for the town of Killeen, but I know I don’t have time,” she said.
Other speakers referred to his role as a philanthropist, including mention of his college scholarship fund of hundreds of thousands of dollars.
City Manager Kent Cagle said the project would cost the city about $1,700 for materials, although Councilwoman Nina Cobb said the cost was immaterial to the project.
“We know that a good name is more desirable than all the riches we will ever have,” Cobb said.
Pro Tem Mayor Debbie Nash-King, who introduced the motion to rename the municipal court building after Raul Villaronga earlier this month, spoke of its impact on the community.
“Naming the Municipal Court Annex after him is just a small token of all the deeds and what he did not just for Central Texas, but for our community as a whole,” a- she declared. “As his wife said, he was a game changer – and one person said ‘changed lives’; he has such an imprint in this community that it will continue for the next generation, especially with the civic class.
Speaking after the meeting, Julia Villaronga was asked what she thought of the overwhelming support from the city council.
“I’m excited,” said Julia Villaronga.
The recent widow said she missed her husband, but was happy he was memorialized on the municipal court building.
Raul Villaronga was appointed as a judge of the city’s juvenile court in 2000, but resigned in 2002 when the city became a court of record. A court of record requires municipal judges to hold a law degree.
He was also recently honored at a flag unveiling ceremony on February 24.