Lila Gonzalez-Garfinkel

Obituary Condolences

Lila Gonzalez-Garfinkel Obituary
Lila Gonzalez-Garfinkel
03/19/1929 - 06/15/2013
Resident of Aptos
LILA GONZALEZ-GARFINKEL, left us peacefully on Sunday, June 16th, 2013 in Aptos, California. Even at 84 years of age, Lila left us far too soon with many flowers and plants to nurture, grandchildren and great grand children to know and hold, a cook book and poetry to be written. Lila was born March 19, 1929 in Mexico City, Mexico. Lila immigrated with her parents and brothers to the United States in 1944.
Lila was a renaissance woman. As a young woman in Detroit in the 1950's Lila worked as a chemist for DuPont Corp. and Udylite Research Corp. Always accomplished, Lila was a ballet dancer, chemist, writer, poet, Landscape Designer and incredible cook! In addition, she also could sew her own clothes and embroider and knit. After obtaining a degree in Chemistry, Lila changed course and graduated from Stanford University with a MA in Spanish Literature. Lila was an Assistant Professor at UC Berkeley and also served as Dean of Chicano Studies. At San Jose State University she introduced and taught 17 new graduate courses in Spanish and Chicano literature. Lila served as a visiting literature professor at Stanford University in 1965, teaching undergraduate courses while completing her PhD in Spanish Literature. Lila maintained an active interest in politics throughout her life. During the decades of the '70 and 80' Lila served in the Environmental Task Force of ABAG; appointed by Gov. Jerry Brown, served as an advocate for immigrant rights at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, and participated in the inclusion of Ethic Studies at the University level in California, Michigan, and Colorado. Lila did all this while raising five children! In 1956, Lila met the love of her life Martin Garfinkel. They married in 1958. Martin preceded her in death in 2001. Lila is survived by her loving children, Maria of San Francisco, CA, Erik of Palo Alto, CA, Andrea of Utah, Aaron of Boulder Creek, CA and Ian of Penn Valley, CA, nine grandchildren and one great grandchild. Lila maintained close ties to her extended family in Mexico. She leaves behind many colleagues, students, neighbors and many dear friends. Lila was very generous and gave to many charitable organizations. "In the end, night came, quietly, swiftly, gently". -L.G.G. The family requests that donations be made in Lila's memory to ST. LABRE INDIAN SCHOOL P.O. BOX 216 ASHLAND, MT. 59003-9989. A memorial service will be held in her honor at a future date. Please contact Lila's daughter, Maria Gonzalez at for information.
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Published in Santa Cruz Sentinel on July 6, 2013
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