Local twins may be oldest living in New Mexico

CNJ staff photo: Liliana Castillo Sisters Maxine Hidalgo and Eufelia Rubio celebrate their 95th birthday on Jan. 22. The family has tried to find records to confirm the pair are the oldest living twins in the state.

By Jenna DeWitt: CNJ staff writer

Clovis may be home to the oldest living twins in New Mexico.

Sisters Maxine Hidalgo and Eufelia Rubio celebrate their 95th birthday on Jan. 22.

Rubio’s granddaughter, Sara Duran, said the family has tried to find records to confirm the pair are the oldest living twins in the state. So far, they haven’t been able to find anyone older.

The twins moved to Clovis about 70 years ago with their husbands, who both worked for the railroad.

The two have witnessed many changes in Clovis and the world in their time. Rubio said one of her favorite inventions is the microwave. Hidalgo said one of the biggest changes she has seen is in the economy.

“Money is different. Everything is more expensive,” she said. “Also, the town has grown a lot.”

Hidalgo remembers the Great Depression. She said everyone had to stand in line to get what they needed with stamps due to the lack of money.

Though the twins have maintained much of their independence, they are both cared for by their family members, who have have stayed close by.

Hidalgo has 6 children, 16 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren. Though none of Hidalgo’s descendants are twins, there are four generations of twins on Rubio’s side. In all, Rubio has 10 children, 53 grandchildren and 113 great-grandchildren and 86 great-great-grandchildren.

The twins are proud of their families, which include several veterans of both war and disease.

“They have turned out well,” Rubio said.

Sara Duran said her grandmother and great-aunt “committed their lives to their children and taught their children to be very community-minded.”

The twins were born in San Ignacio in 1914, only two years after New Mexico became a state. Sara Duran said they do not know which twin is older because they do not have birth certificates.

Neither ever drove, citing bad experiences while learning. Both women said they used to walk wherever they needed to go, especially to Main Street because it was full of businesses.

“They walked everywhere. I guess that’s why they are so healthy,” said Maxine’s daughter, Mary Lou Garcia.

It is harder for them to get out now, especially in the winter cold. Hidalgo misses playing bingo. Rubio wishes she could still work in her garden. Both miss dancing at special events like weddings.

Still, they do not let much slow them down.

“If I want to do it, I can do it. I can’t stay sitting down all the time,” Rubio said.

The sisters keep in touch by calling each other and visiting when the weather is warm.

Rubio’s life-lesson after 95 years?

“Forgive things and forget things,” she said.