Julia Palomino Nash, 78, of Hamburg, died July 16, 2014 at the Pinewood Health and Rehabilitation Center in Crossett.
Mrs. Nash was born in Iquique, Chile on April 2, 1936 and was the daughter of the late Pedro Palomino Corteq and Olga Garcia. Iquique is a small town in northern Chile. She graduated from high school there in 1954.
Mrs. Nash worked the next few years in her hometown as a room clerk in a hotel. One day at the hotel, she met James U. Nash, an American from Lawson who worked for an oil company out of California.
They were married on September 24, 1960. The next few years were itinerant years as the couple followed Mr. Nash’s work to Brazil, Spain, and several other locations before moving to Lawson where Mr. Nash for several years as the city marshal.
When Mrs. Nash arrived in the United States she could not speak English at all. Her husband served as her interpreter until Mrs. Nash’s friend, Mrs. Jesse Little, a retired school teacher, taught her to speak English.
Mrs. Nash would go to Mrs. Little’s home twice a day — one hour in the morning and one hour in the afternoon — for tutoring. Mrs. Nash eventually picked up the English language well enough that she could communicate with English-speaking persons.
In 1970, the Nashes moved to Hamburg.
Mrs. Nash returned to Chile to visit her family several times but in 1982, she decided to forego and reject her Chilean citizenship to become an American citizen. This was a big step for her. She knew it would be difficult since she hadn’t attended school in the United States but with the help of the “DAR Manual for Citizenship” and her friend, Mrs. Claire Jane Hall, who helped her for six months prepare for the tests, she made it.
Mrs. Nash took her test in Memphis at the Clifford Davis Federal building on April 7, 1982 and the court in Texarkana filed an application for citizenship for her. She was sworn in as a naturalized American citizen in the US District Court, Fort Smith Division, on June 23, 1982.
Mr. Nash was very proud of his wife. “You’re doggone right I’m proud of her,” he would say. “I’m very pleased with her, especially because she made the decision herself.”
Mrs. Nash worked at the Hamburg Shirt Factory in 1971, Rapid Die Molding in 1973, Ashley County Apparel in 1975 and WAM Industries in 1987. She was always excited and proud when she met her quotas each week. She became a very good seamstress and made her beautiful clothes.
Her favorite day was Saturday when she would get all dressed up, heels and all, and go shopping or maybe a movie in Monroe at the mall. She knew the clerks by name and they knew her. Several would eat lunch with her before she left the mall. She always could find the best bargains. “It only cost four dollars,” she would say.
Mrs. Nash loved her God and was a member of the First Baptist Church where she served as Sunday School class secretary. She is survived by a close friend, Marilyn Chambers of Hamburg.
Graveside services will be held July 18 at 11 a.m. at the Philadelphia Baptist Church Cemetery in Union County with Dr. Bobby Pennington officiating.
Memorials may be made to the First Baptist Church, PO Box 352, Hamburg, AR 71646.