Julia Ransom (1965 - 2019)

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  • "John, I was so saddened to hear about Julia. I feel like a..."
  • "I am very sorry to hear about the loss of Julia touched..."
    - Michael Garcia
  • "Words cannot express how very sad the news is of Julie's..."
  • "Dear John, Max, and Ella, I met Julia many years ago at..."
  • "May your years of Julia's love and happy memories sustain..."
    - Julia Cohen
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Obituary

Julia Ransom

Julia Ransom, age 54, passed away at home in the quiet morning of May 15, 2019, with husband, John, the love of her life since kindergarten, by her side. She lived her last days as she lived lifeâ€"surrounded by children, Max and Ella, her dogs and alpacas, and her beautiful gardens in bloom. Julia was born March 31, 1965, in Albuquerque to parents, LeRoy Hansen and Maxine Cowton. Julia was constantly tumbling through their North Valley house, destroying walls and lamps in her wake, and was, as sister Heather remembered, "the source of energy for our family." Julia loved being outside and as a girl befriended an elderly neighbor who was a master gardener; thus, began a lifelong love of gardening. Julia had severe childhood asthma and one doctor recommended track to strengthen lung capacity, while all her other doctors discouraged the sport. Perhaps it was their pessimistic attitude that challenged Julia to do exactly what others said she could never do. It should be noted she still holds the state record in the 75-meter hurdles. Julia and John's relationship started early as their moms formed a kindergarten carpool, resulting in a five-year old Julia and John teasing one another all the way to school. Often the station wagon would be pulled off on the side of the road, mom imploring kids to cut out their horseplay or else! Once at school, John and a dozen other boys would chase Julia at recess. They learned she was not only cute; she was the fastest runner on the playground. Despite her asthma, Julia stood out in track and gymnasticsâ€"Albuquerque Gymnastics School became a second familyâ€"and Julia was a beautiful skier. The family spent winters and summers at their cabin in Taos, which Julia loved and considered a second hometown. Julia graduated from the Albuquerque Academy, then attended University of Colorado Boulder and later Arizona State University, ultimately graduating from University of New Mexico in 1989 with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and a minor in French. After graduation she completed a challenging, intensive Career Development Program for teaching and started her career as a devoted and gifted teacher in Albuquerque Public Schools. She took pride in her students, who knew her as Miss Julia, and she would stay in touch with them throughout their school years. The part of education she most loved was, in her words, "watching children make sense of the world around them." Julia's and John's moms never stopped keeping tabs on the other's son or daughter and were fond of saying they planned all along that Julia and John would one day marry. With the help of friends, who by then had gotten in on the plotting, it so happened that Julia and John reconnected. Although it's clear they'd loved each other since age five, they finally made it official, marrying in 1996. Soon after marriage, Julia left teaching to take on her most important role, becoming mother to son, Max, then daughter, Ella. If you spent any time in Julia's orbit, you knew her love was fierce and enduring. She was true mama bear to her children, bringing not just heart but her skills and experience in education to help nurture them. She created for her family a beautiful space to live. Inside was light and airy and outside were gardens filled with native plants. Julia's dogs were all rescues; she even rescued five alpacas. Every animal settled in with Julia's tender and intuitive care. All thisâ€"what she often called her "rancho"â€"she managed with grace and elegance. Julia was a gracious, generous, and open host. Everyone was welcome. Her large extended family and friends loved celebrating in Julia's home, and her Halloween parties were notorious. There was never a time limit; people stayed into late hours. Even when Julia was diagnosed with cancer in November, 2016, she and John continued to open the home to family, and throughout every celebration, Julia was present and engaged and living each moment. In any setting, Julia was never one to socialize on a superficial level. When meeting new people, she managed to find the thing with which she could empathize, and she would have deep conversations, creating life-long relationships. Cancer is a ravaging disease, yet Julia never let it diminish her gratitude for life. Already a practitioner of mindfulness, she further embraced slowing down, letting go, and being grateful. Buddhism especially resonated, and her role as teacher, and learner, became especially apparent in final years. She was treated at UNM Cancer Center and MD Anderson in Houston, and she could be seen in waiting rooms with other patients leaned in, all sharing experiences and learning from one another. If someone was left out, Julia would bring them into the circle. Everyone was fond of Julia, from renowned oncologists and nurses, to shuttle drivers. Julia was genuine. Above all, she was kind to every living being and wished them well and happiness. We are grateful to the medical and support staff at UNM Cancer Center and MD Anderson for their competent care in Julia's last years, and to Julia's long-time doctors, who were with her through the very end. Thank you, New Mexico Hospice. And thank you to all who sent prayers, who messaged Julia daily with their love, who sent words that were read to her in her final days. You were with her throughout her life and she loved you all. Julia is survived by husband, John Ransom; children, Max and Ella; mother, Maxine Cowton; father, Honorable C. LeRoy Hansen and wife, Ruth; sister, Heather and husband, Tim Gallegos, and children, Hannah and Dane; father-in-law, Honorable Richard Ransom and wife, Mary Thelma; brother-in-law, Jim Ransom and wife, Roma; sister-in-law, JoEllen Ransom and partner, Kevin; nieces and nephews, Lauren, Zach, Daisy, and Mia. The family will hold a private Memorial for Julia. If you wish to honor her, please donate in her name to Tickled Pink Weimaraner Rescue, www.weimaranerrescue.org or any other animal rescue organization of your preference. Please visit our online guestbook for Julia at

www.FrenchFunerals.com

Published in Albuquerque Journal from May 19 to May 22, 2019
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