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Winifred Cox


1916 - 2014 | Obituary Condolences
Winifred Cox Obituary
Winifred Cox
Dec 13, 1916 - July 17, 2014
Aptos
Winifred Heaton Cox (called Win or Winnie by her friends) passed away on July 17, 2014 at the age of 97 after a very full and meaningful life. Win was caring, sweet and generous to everyone she met her whole life, until the day she died. It was ingrained in her nature, but also she strived to always do the right thing, the good thing, the kind thing. Win was honest, practical, helpful, and had a genuine easy smile for everyone. She was always interested in other people, and wanted to help. She always made people feel welcome and she always made her family feel loved. If one had to sum up her "doings" in a few words it would be: education, avid reader, teaching, especially teaching children to read, travel, and family. She was also very modest and self-effacing. One ethic of hers was to never brag about anything. She was an amazingly good person through and through. Win's values, decisions, and choices were an excellent example to her family, and all those that knew her. Those values and her spirit will live on within all the people she touched in her life.
Win grew up in Iowa, the youngest of 4 children, living mostly on her family's farm. Her father farmed and eventually specialized in growing and selling gladiola bulbs and flowers, and her mother taught school and church school. She went on to Simpson College in Indianola, Iowa and got her teaching degree there. As money was scarce, she and her sister took turns teaching to earn the money to send the other to college. She taught kindergarten and first grade in Iowa before joining the WAVES (the women's branch of the Navy) at the beginning of WWII. Following training, she served at the Naval air base in Livermore, CA where she was a control tower operator for the duration of the war. Following her Honorable Discharge, she taught in Des Moines and used the GI bill to get her private and commercial pilot's licenses. Win then went to UCLA and got her Master's in Education at UCLA. She loved the ocean, really learned to love California and began teaching in Santa Monica. She just loved children her whole life. She loved to teach reading, and it gave her great satisfaction when children would learn to enjoy reading, as she knew that would help them and give them joy their whole lives. She was very active in the Santa Monica Methodist church, where she met her husband, Paul Albert Cox. They married in 1954 and welcomed a daughter, Paula, in 1955. Win cared for foster children, and neighbor's and friend's children. Win continued to teach in Santa Monica and later in Malibu. Altogether she taught 40 years. She loved to travel with her husband and daughter, and after her husband passed away in 1971, she continued to travel with family, friends and relatives. She retired from teaching in 1983, and moved to Aptos, to be near her daughter and son-in-law. Then she began her myriad of volunteer jobs: most importantly tutoring children that were struggling with reading, but also including working at the front desk of Dominican Hospital, helping at the YWCA thrift shop, and being church treasurer. She especially enjoyed taking care of her grandsons after they were born, and was integral in raising them. They were lucky to have a grandma who could teach them to read and knew so much about children. She was a very close and important part of their lives. They definitely felt loved. She closely followed their every pursuit.
Win is survived by her daughter, Paula LaHue, son-in-law, Thomas LaHue, and grandsons Nathaniel (Nate) LaHue, and Gabriel (Gabe) LaHue, a sister, Marjorie Lynn (age 99), and many nieces and nephews.
Win's celebration of life will take place Saturday August 9th at 2:30pm at her beloved Aptos Community United Methodist Church, located at 221 Thunderbird Dr., in Aptos. All who knew and loved her are invited. In lieu of flowers, donations in her name can be made to Aptos UMC memorial garden or the Monterey Bay Aquarium, or the Salvation Army.
Published in Santa Cruz Sentinel on Aug. 3, 2014
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