Stella Mae ""Teddie"" (Gallaway) Olson

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1916 - 2013

Stella Mae "Teddie" Gallaway Olson passed away on Sunday, March 3, 2013 at her home in Santa Clarita, CA. Teddie was born in Raymond, NE on September 20, 1916 to Stella Irene "Teddie" Baird Gallaway and Clyde Waldo Gallaway. She attended elementary and secondary schools in rural Harrison, NE, Omaha, NE, and graduated from Crawford High School, Crawford, NE. Teddie earned a two year teaching certificate from Chadron State College in Nebraska. Later, she returned to Chadron State where she got her Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics. She earned a Master of the Arts degree from Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA. Teddie continued her education and had many units above her master's degree. She was a "true" student. She loved learning.

Teddie married Arthur O. Olson (Battleview, ND) in June 1935 at her parents' ranch. They had two daughters, Ruth Irene and Dolores Mae "Dori." Teddie was a loving and caring wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. In October of 2012 she traveled to San Diego, CA to see her first great-great-granddaughter. Then, in February of 2013 she was blessed with her second great-great-granddaughter. Her accomplishments were many, but she never lost sight of her family. She had special experiences that she shared with each one of them over the years. She had a knack for relating to each generation as they came along.

Teddie had a remarkably productive life. She taught at a rural school outside of Harrison, NE early in her marriage when she and her husband and daughters lived on her parents' ranch in Sioux County, NE. Then, she moved to Culver City, CA in 1943 to join the war effort. Art worked on the Spruce Goose and Teddie attended UCLA, both were programs established to help with the war. After returning to Nebraska, Teddie continued to take care of her family while she did the training necessary to become a Red Cross volunteer nurse's aide. She continued this service until the war was over. Teddie had many ventures throughout her life. She ran the Community Chest effort in Scottsbluff, NE with great success; she was a substitute teacher while her children were small and taught at Lake Alice rural and Owl Creek rural school. She worked at a bakery when she decided she wanted to learn how to decorate cakes, she taught sewing at the Singer Sewing Machine Company in Scottsbluff, NE; all the while running her home and attending every function that involved her daughters. She drove kids to out of town games all through the 50's to watch the Scottsbluff Bearcat teams and band. She was active in the Plymouth Congregational Church in Scottsbluff, NE and taught Sunday school for many years. She belonged to the Doe's and loved playing bridge. She always had a project she was experimenting with… one year she made candy, one year she raised chickens, and another she raised strawberries. She was bookkeeper for the Olson Tire Company that she and her husband opened in 1955. After her daughters were married, she became an electrologist. This required her to obtain a cosmetology license. She returned to college in 1964 and finished her degree. She taught for a short tenure at Melbeta High School and then moved to California. She taught mathematics in the Palos Verdes Unified School District at a middle school, Dapple Grey, until she was 69 years old. Teddie loved every single day of this experience. Her students were the "apples of her eyes" and she cherished the experience of helping them learn to love math as she did. To her, there was not a child born who could not learn if their method of learning was discovered. She was a genius at this discovery. Her "Math" teams did exceptionally well in competition! After retirement, she continued to substitute teach in Kentucky and then in the William S. Hart Union School District in Santa Clarita, CA.

In her later years she remained active, doing her exercises every single day and attending birthday parties, weddings or just traveling to spend time with loved ones. She was an avid reader and loved playing internet games. She lived life right up to the end. She will be missed every day by those who loved her so much.

Teddie is survived by her sister, Josephine Gallaway Kennedy; daughter, Dori (Bud) Murray; grandchildren, Jamie Lee Venger Lewis, Roc LeRoy (Debbie) Murray, Tad Chernoff (Cheryl) Venger, Kodee Kim Murray, Ric Clifford Arthur Murray, Rake Gallaway (Marianne) Murray, Tirey Lewis (Ilse) Venger; great-grandchildren, Janelle Lee Lewis, Kari Gene Lewis (Jeff) Reed, Michael LeRoy (Noelle) Murray, Chris Parkin Murray, Scott Roc Franklin Murray, Erica Ann Venger, Emily Marie Venger, Kevin Jesiah Venger, Clara Maggie Ruth Venger, Kolby Stephan Venger, Ella Grace Murray, John Gallaway Murray; great-great grandchildren, Maddison Jule Murray, Peyton Lynn Reed; nieces and nephews, Robert Allen Stevens, Donald (Pam) Stevens, Lela Kennedy (Marvin) Criswell, William (Nancy) Kennedy, Avis Kennedy (Bob) Blaylock, Barbara Kennedy (Charles) Gregalis; 17 great nieces and nephews and several great-great-nieces and nephews.

Teddie was preceded in death by her husband, Arthur O. Olson; her daughter, Ruth Irene Olson Venger Edwards; her parents; infant sister, Ruth; brother, William Clayton Gallaway; sisters, Mary Elizabeth Gallaway (and Joe) Stevens, and Margaret Esther Gallaway (and Albert) Hickey; brother in law, Gerald Kennedy; niece, Margaret Stevens Shaffer; nephew, Jack Stevens; and great niece, Robin Stevens.

A Celebration of Teddie's Life will be held in California. She will be inurned at the Fairview Cemetery in Scottsbluff, NE. A mathematics scholarship will be established in her name.

The Signal, March 16, 2013
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Published on from March 16 to March 22, 2013
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