A very sweet, extremely genteel Southern Lady joined parents, numerous siblings, a daughter-in-law and her husband in Heaven on the seventh of December. Louise Cribbs Rasmussen was born on November 20, 1920, near Tutwiler, Mississippi, on the family plantation in the Mississippi Delta, where family had lived since before the Civil War. She was the epitome of Southern kindness, character, beauty, and honor. The fifth of seven children to be born to Lena and Frederick Cribbs, her mother and the doctor vehemently disagreed as to whether she was born on the 20th or the 22nd. Consequently, the family often celebrated both dates; but of course, as Louise would drawl, she certainly "didn't age by two years but only one".
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Raised in Tutwiler, Louise enjoyed an idyllic childhood among numerous siblings, cousins, and friends. She graduated from the then-called Mississippi State College for Women and received a degree in Home Economics, specializing in clothing and textiles. Well into her eighties, Louise would create and sew outfits that would make professional seamstresses envious. Upon graduating from college and at the onset of WWII, Louise moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where she worked in a science laboratory. There she met Kenneth Rasmussen, a young Air Force instructor pilot. After the war, they were married and were immediately sent to war-torn Yokohoma, Japan. Christopher, their son, was born there, and soon after returning to the United States, their daughter Tege was born in Virginia. From Virginia, the family of four moved to Murfreesboro, Tennessee, which was soon followed by their great northern adventure of three years, Newfoundland.
The year l958 saw them return stateside; they moved to Walker AFB in Roswell, NM, and their love for that state began. Upon retiring from the Air Force, Ken moved his family to Portales, then Clovis, where he was on staff at Eastern New Mexico University. Upon his second retirement, Ken yearned for more education, and the two of them returned to Louise's roots in Mississippi, where Ken received a long-awaited PhD. Soon after, they began another adventure: a two-year stint with the Peace Corps in Guatemala.
In their mid-sixties, Ken and Louise returned to New Mexico, moved to Albuquerque, and resumed their love for the Land of Enchantment. Louise was a member of the PEO Sisterhood, and was an avid, if not downright dangerous, bridge player. She was a voracious reader, and she enjoyed playing golf, swimming and walking the neighborhoods. She and Ken were stalwart members of the Cathedral of St. John, where she was very involved in the Altar Guild.
Soon after Ken's death in August of 2008, Louise moved to La Vida Llena Retirement Community, where she met many new people and re-connected with twenty-five year old friendships. The family is very thankful to the loving staff of La Vida Llena for making Louise's last four years so pleasurable and comfortable. Louise was extremely content at LVL.
Louise is survived by son, Christopher Kenneth, of Albuquerque; and daughter, Tege Montmorency (John) of Napa, California. She is also survived by five granddaughters, Krisha Montmorency (Gabe Sakakeeny) and Jess Montmorency, both of the San Francisco Bay Area, Elena Lenz (Michael), Anna Rasmussen and Tessa Rasmussen, all of Albuquerque. She is also survived by a grandson, Benjamin James Rasmussen, a Marine stationed in Hawaii; two great-grandchildren, Jakob and Gabriella Lenz of Albuquerque, also survive her. In addition to her California and New Mexico families, Louise is survived by her last sibling, Lena Belle Cribbs of Jackson, Mississippi, and by many nieces and nephews.
Louise never felt sorry for herself, and to the day she died was more concerned that people were worried about her than she felt was necessary. Chris and Tege like to think that Louise is enjoying a nice, fruity glass of California Chardonnay with Ken, while she gabs with all her beloved brothers and sisters, happily retelling stories of her happy childhood.
A memorial service will be held for Louise on Saturday, December 29, 2012, at 2:00 pm, at La Vida Llena Retirement Community. In-lieu-of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Employee Association Fund at La Vida Llena Retirement Community, the Foundation at St. John's Episcopal Cathedral, Albuquerque or the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of New Mexico. Please visit our online guest book for Louise at www.FrenchFunerals.com.
Published in the Clovis News Journal and Portales News-Tribune on Dec. 23, 2012