Elizabeth Alvarez, former owner of Martin's Book Store in El Paso, Tex., died October 7. She was 95.
A native of France, Alvarez met Martin Alvarez in 1945 in Europe when he was in the U.S. Army. He opened Martin's Book Store in 1969, and when he died in 1980, she took it over. In 1999, two of Alvarez's daughters opened up businesses with her under the same roof--a dance school and a vintage clothing and theater costumes shop. Last year, the businesses closed when one of the daughters became terminally ill with cancer.
"One of the nice things about my mother is that people would come in and she could talk to them in four different languages," Lorraine Alvarez Portilla told the El Paso Times. "And she had a really sharp memory. It was so sharp she could say if she had a book or not."