Shirley Ann Fant Mathews died peacefully at her home in Santa Fe on Dec. 11, 2012. She was the devoted wife of Robert Wayne Mathews for 54 years.
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Shirley was born Oct. 11, 1937 in West Monroe, La. She attended West Monroe High School, graduating in 1956. She then attended Northeastern Louisiana University, where she was an active member of the AOPi Sorority. She married Robert Mathews in 1958. The young couple moved to Dallas, Texas, where Shirley worked as a secretary in the executive offices of Sanger-Harris department stores. She had three children: Sandra Kay born in 1959, Gregory Wayne in 1960 and Ann Louise in 1963. The family moved to Los Alamos in 1961, where Shirley devoted herself to raising her family. She returned to work in 1978 as a secretary at Los Alamos National Laboratory. She retired in 1993 and moved to Santa Fe with her husband and son. In her retirement, she volunteered at an AIDS relief agency and traveled to Washington, D.C. in 1996 to view the AIDS quilt. She also developed herself as an artist by studying with a local master. She traveled to Italy with the University of Michigan to study Renaissance altar pieces. She also studied painting techniques at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. She made two trips to Germany to see churches, castles and friends. She also made a trip to Cooperstown, N.Y. to watch one of her grandsons win a national baseball tournament. She remained devoted to her husband and family, immensely enjoying her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Shirley is preceded by her son Gregory Wayne Mathews; granddaughter Sarah Ann Ortiz Stump; father Thomas Major Fant; mother Maudie Louise Posey; and brothers Thomas and Robert Fant.
She is survived by her husband Robert Wayne Mathews; daughter Sandra Mathews Ortiz; son-in-law Robert William Ortiz; daughter Ann Mathews Torres; son-in-law Ernesto Torres; grandchildren Robby Ortiz and wife Samantha, Matthew Ortiz and wife Rachel, Sebastian and Cameron Torres; great grandchildren Sariah, Myrakahl and Beloved Stump; brother Joe Fant and wife Sylvia; sisters-in-law Ruth Fant and Sue Fant; numerous nephews, nieces, cousins and friends.
A Memorial Service will be held at 4:00 p.m. on Dec. 16 at the New Life Family Fellowship, 1612 Pacheco St., Santa Fe, NM with a reception to follow.
Published in Los Alamos Monitor from Dec. 16 to Dec. 18, 2012