Armando Rubio, a Spanish-language broadcaster in Oklahoma, died from COVID-19 complications at 73.
Rubio hosted a TV show about Latino issues and worked as Telemundo T30′s station manager. He died on Feb. 18, The Oklahoman reported Wednesday.
“He loved the Latino community of Oklahoma and the state, and what it provided for him and his family,” son-in-law John Woods said. “He knew the Latino community deserved a voice in Oklahoma.”
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Rubio was born in El Paso, Texas, but grew up in Juarez, Mexico. He registered for the U.S. Army in 1966 and was eventually drafted.
After the Army, he lived in California and married Margarita Garcia in 1972. They later moved to Oklahoma, where he volunteered to help Hispanics with their income taxes. He also leased time from KTLR 890 AM, formerly KBYE, to do a radio show in Spanish and sold ads for the show while working full-time for General Motors.
“I consider myself not only bilingual, but also bicultural. I’m very proud and I’m very happy to be 2-in-1,” he told The Oklahoman in a 2008 interview.
Rubio retired from GM and earned a license from the American Broadcasting School in Del City.
He worked part-time for Tyler Media when it initiated a Spanish radio station and joined the company full-time in 2000 when it launched a TV station.
“This is for me,” Rubio said in 2008. “This is for my family. This is for my kids. I’m an Okie now.”
Rubio is survived by his wife of 49 years, Margarita Rubio; son, Rigoberto Robles and his wife Alicia; daughter Tania Woods and her husband John; grandchildren Abigail and Avery Robles, Miles Rosas, Ryan and Finley Woods; and brothers, Gabriel and Andres Rubio.