SARAH DECK STEVENS

Obituary
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SARAH DECK STEVENS Of Santa Fe, New Mexico, went on before us on Thursday, December 20, 2012. She was fifty-five years old and died of throat cancer. Sarah was the wife of David Stevens of Santa Fe; mother of Eleanor Stevens of Grinnell College in Iowa; daughter of J. David and Pauline Phelps Deck of Charlottesville, Virginia; and sister of J. David Deck, Jr., of Richmond, Virginia, Stewart Deck of Boston, Massachusetts, and Emily Deck Harrill of Columbia, South Carolina - all of whom survive her. Sarah was born in Charlottesville, Virginia, in 1957. She graduated with honors from Charlottesville High School in 1975, and from Davidson College in 1979, having spent her junior year in Montpellier, France. After graduation, she worked as a research assistant at the University of Virginia. She later pursued a career teaching mathematics. She taught first at West Chester Friends School in Pennsylvania, and completed a Masters degree in Secondary Math Teaching at Widener University. After moving to Santa Fe, Sarah served for ten years on the faculty and administration of the Santa Fe Waldorf School. Many Waldorf students remember her as a favorite teacher, the one who unlocked a knack for math the student had not even imagined having. Sarah was a devoted wife and mother. Home and hearth were the pole stars around which she revolved. Among her greatest joys were fixing meals for her family, listening to Eleanor describe the day's events, and hearing David read aloud after dinner. Cooking was a passion and a therapy. She shared her love for others by feeding them and by exchanging ideas about food. Serving meals to others brought her peace and joy. Sarah wove music into her world as a means of self-expression and joy. As a youngster, she took piano lessons, sang in the church choir, and performed in high school musicals. As a teen, she sang with Charlottesville's Oratorio Society. When she arrived at Davidson College and discovered it had no women's chorus, she helped found the Davidson Women's Chorus. She nurtured the love of music in others, devotedly attending Santa Fe Youth Symphony concerts at which her daughter played cello. Sarah passed on her love of singing to Eleanor; many times in church after singing a hymn, someone in the pew in front would turn and say, "What beautiful voices you two have!" Sarah's siblings' early lives were defined by being her younger brother or sister; hers was a tough act to follow. As the oldest of four, she was often the leader and guide, helping the others to know - through her experience - where to go and sometimes what to avoid. In adulthood, she had a remarkable ability to know what was happening with her brothers and sister, regardless of distance or time. David, Stewart and Emily, as well as Sarah's nieces and nephews, delight in her memory, hoping to carry her loyalty, empathy and beauty into their own relationships. A bittersweet ache fills the hearts of those of us left behind. Our homes and hearths are stricken, but our hearts are enlarged by having known and loved Sarah. Sarah, may you find the peace you long sought. Our love goes with you, just as yours stays with us. A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 5, 2013, at 11:00 a.m., at the First Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe. Donations in Sarah's name may be made to the Santa Fe Waldorf School or to the Hospice Center of Presbyterian Medical Services.

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