VIOLA FISHER Viola Fisher born August 13 1920 in Colton, Washington, died May 8, 2014 in Santa Fe. She was preceded in death by her parents Willis and Bernice Fisher, brothers Edward and Robert, and sister Irene. She is survived by numerous nieces and nephews. Viola attended the University Idaho earning her Bachelor's degree in dietetics. She began work as a hospital dietician but wanted more. During WWII she became a Lieutenant in the Army. After the war, she earned her Master's degree in public health from Columbia University. Her work took her around the world combating hunger and malnutrition. In 1955 she went to Shiraz, Iran to set up the dietary department in a brand new hospital. From 1959 to 1962 she taught at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Her work with FAO took her to Africa and India helping to combat hunger across the globe. As part of a UN/ FAO team, she raised the alarm with key government officials from Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania and Sierra Leone. She was committed to a survey of food consumption in India's villages; phase one of an FAO/UNICEF effort to rescue children from malnutrition and hunger. In 1965 she fell in love with Santa Fe. After another contract with FAO in India she settled down as a nutrition consultant for the New Mexico State Department of Health in 1971 and retired from the Indian Health Service in 1982. She was named as one of Santa Fe's Living Treasures in 1992 and in 1995 she was honored as a Distinguished Alumna of the Margaret Ritchie School of Family and Consumer Science, University of Idaho. Viola's love for plants and plants and the environment was evident in her many years of devotion to develop the Santa Fe Botanical Garden's Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve. Her dedication as its first lead docent and the subsequent educational programs at the site inspired many and will forever be remembered and honored. Though never married she spent much of her life working with and for children and inspiring her nieces and nephews to have an appreciation for our place in the world community. They all looked forward to hearing where she had been and what she might send for them to share at show and tell. Viola was a world traveler, foster parent of children overseas, and an indomitable athlete who skied the slopes near Santa Fe into her 80's. During her lifetime she hiked in the Himalayas and rafted in North and South America. She took in rescue animals before it was fashionable and lived her entire life as a conservationist long before many were aware of the importance of our environmental impact. Viola was devoted to her rescue dogs, Pleiades, Ndebele, Cece and others, and through each dog, she had a special network of "human" friends. Viola's nieces and nephews wish to thank the incredibly kind staff of El Castillo for their wonderful care of Viola throughout her stay there. Her family suggests memorial contributions in her name be directed to the
or to the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. Her family also recommends visiting the Viola Bridge at Leonora Curtin Wetland Preserve in the Botanical Garden. Rivera Family Funerals and Cremations, 417 East Rodeo Rd. Santa Fe, NM 87505. Phone: (505) 989-7032. Fax: (505) 820-0435 santafefuneraloption.com
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The Rivera Family of Santa Fe Funeral Options
417 E. Rodeo Road
Santa Fe, NM 87505
Published in Santa Fe New Mexican on May 16, 2014