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10/20/1923 - 3/15/2013
Ardis Irene (Lawhead) Whitehead passed away peacefully on Friday, March 15, 2013. Ardis was born in Santa Rosa, California where she met her husband, Don Whitehead. Ardis was known as a virtuoso violinist at the early age of eight and continued to win musical competitions throughout her childhood. She had perfect pitch which allowed her to learn violin concertos from just listening to others. She attended San Jose State College and received a music degree and teaching credential after her professors told her women couldn't teach music.
Ardis moved to Auburn with her husband to teach music in the Placer County schools where she retired after 31 years. Playing violin was her gift. She performed with the Auburn Symphony and was a soloist for numerous organizations. The First Congregational Church became her religious and musical home for 66 years in Auburn. She sang in the church choir for over 60 years, belonged to P.E.O. for 46 years, participated in the Travel Study Club, played bass clarinet in the Sierra College evening band and enjoyed competing in a variety of bridge groups over the years.
She was preceded in death by her father, Arthur Lawhead; her mother, Irene Lawhead; sister, Lyla Bond; and brother, Roy Lawhead. She is survived by her loving husband of 69 years, Don Whitehead; two daughters, Lynn (Ron) Garrison and Leslie (Mike) Belles; five grandchildren, Emily (Adrian Solorio) Garrison, Megan (Jeff) Rubin, Jason (Rebecca) Belles, Darren (Sharona) Belles, and Brian (Kim) Belles; and seven great-grandchildren, Sofia and Andrea Solorio Garrison, Matthew and Emma Belles, Alex and Hayden Belles, and Luke Belles as well as loving nieces and nephews.
She always had a kind word and ready smile for everyone. She accepted people for who they were. Laughter, love, and music filled her life. She wanted to be remembered for her love of family and love of the violin.
Services will be held on April 20, 2013 at 1 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of Auburn, 710 Auburn Ravine Rd. in Auburn 95603, reception will follow at the same address.
Published in Gold Country Media Newspapers on Apr. 14, 2013