Julio Edwardo “Cano” Reyes was the ultimate family man. He would do anything for his wife, children and grandchildren, his parents, siblings and extended family. Life revolved around them, and nothing made him happier than when he was with them. No matter what the occasion, Cano found an opportunity to celebrate family and to ensure that everyone enjoyed being together. As a host, he made people feel at home, and as a jokester, he always brought laughter to any gathering. Cano’s love of life was immense, and it spilled over into the lives of those around him.
Born Julio Edwardo Reyes in Bronx, New York, “Cano” was the youngest child of Edwardo and Magdelina (Torres) Reyes. He was welcomed into a family of four siblings—David, Jimmy, Andrew, and Millie — on July 14, 1966. Little sister Evelyn would eventually complete the family. Though Americans were experiencing turbulent times with war protests and political assassinations, the Reyes family enjoyed life as a close knit family, and his parents instilled in him the values of loyalty, hospitality and determination.
Throughout Cano’s childhood, it was said that he stuck to his mother like glue. As he grew, their relationship remained strong. He was the one who taught her how to drive. On the very first day he purchased his car, Cano took his mom for a lesson saying, “Don’t worry Mom, I trust you.” Truth be told, he had taken her to the “boonies” where there wasn’t a car in sight.
After graduating from high school, Cano had joined the Army Reserves, but life changed most when he married the lovely Marisol Rivera. The loving couple was blessed with two children—Elyce and Leah—and when Marisol’s sister died, they took her two children into their home. They raised Melissa and Joel as if they were their own because, in fact, they were.
Cano worked at Northwestern Mutual Life in Milwaukee as a loan and surrender specialist. Interestingly, Cano was known as Edward in professional settings, but at no time did he use his given name Julio. Cano was a committed employee and always eager to participate in work-related events. Whether it was a Brewers’ day event, a company family day, take your child to work day, or promotional parties, Cano was proud to have his wife and children at his side.
Cano loved celebrating with his family for the holidays, birthdays, promotions—you name it, he was there. More often than not, he organized and hosted family get-togethers at home or at parks and helped with shopping, cleaning and cooking. He loved to grill, especially pork chops that he seasoned perfectly. He cooked a Spanish soup called “salchichon soup” that was so heavenly his guests were sure to say “mmmmm” at the first spoonful. Whenever family or friends came to his house, Cano made sure they had something good to eat.
To say the least, Cano loved his family and was so very proud of his children and grandchildren that he couldn’t stop bragging about them. With lighthearted intent, he joked to his brothers and sisters, “My children are the only 100% pure Puerto Rican children in our family.” To his brothers and sisters-in-law, he chided in jest, “My daughter is prettier than yours” or “My grandson is much more handsome than yours.” Even concerning his mother and mother-in- law, he teased, “My mom is better than yours” or “My mom cooks better than yours.” In response, Cano’s family just chuckled and continued the mock debate.
Chalk it up to a competitive spirit, Cano was constantly challenging those around him. When it came to trivia, history or language, he was rarely outsmarted and often corrected his family and friend’s grammar. As for sports competition, no one rivaled his beloved Green Bay Packers and game day was sacrosanct. When the Packers were playing, every TV in the house and even the garage was tuned to the game. Cano was such an extreme fan that he was known to “dismiss” people for being on the opposing side or coming into the house wearing a different team’s jersey or cheering for the other guys. Yet, even though he might be bummed-out if the Packers lost, he was still the ultimate host, preparing delicious food and drinks and making sure everyone had a good time all season long.
With family and friends around him, Cano was most content. He loved being at home, reading or watching his favorite TV programs—Game of the Thrones, Shameless, cartoons, old sit coms and of course the History Channel. Sitting outside in the back yard was pure relaxation and playing with his dogs was a treat. From an early age, he was so devoted to his pets that when the family dog ran away, Cano spent his own money to get the dog out of the pound.
Tenderhearted and sentimental, Cano put his family ahead of himself. With his tendency to hold onto items around the house, he never got rid of his children’s toys as they grew older. Now they become precious gifts that allow them to hold onto Cano.
Edward “Cano” Reyes found peace Saturday, October 19, 2013, age 47 years. He died in Glendale, Wisconsin. Beloved husband of Marisol (nee Rivera). Cherished father of Melissa Rivera, Elyce Reyes, Joel Rivera, and Leah Reyes. Proud grandfather of Adelia Ortiz and James Griffin. Loving son of Magdelina and the late Edwardo Reyes. Fond brother of David (Rebecca) Reyes, Jimmy (Cindy) Reyes, Andrew (Judy) Reyes, Millie (Yahchanan) Hampton, and Evelyn (Tim) Reyes. Further survived by other relatives and friends.
Visitation at the Funeral Home Thursday, October 24 from 3:00 PM until the time of the Funeral Service at 6:00 PM. If desired, memorials to the family are greatly appreciated.
Suminski LifeStory Funeral Homes. Suminski / Weiss, 1901 N. Farwell Ave, (414) 276-5122.
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