Laura K. Padilla
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Laura K. Padilla of Colorado Springs passed away on March 16th after living with breast cancer for eleven years. A literary scholar, she received her BA in English from Reed College, her MA from Penn State University, and her Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin.

She wrote about the literature of her native New Mexico with penetrating insight, unsparing honesty, and trenchant wit. Her students at Colorado College, where she was an Assistant Professor, remember her as a thoughtful and demanding teacher.

She is survived by a large extended family that remains on land it has occupied for over three hundred years near Bernalillo, New Mexico. Branches now extend to Albuquerque, California, Texas, the Washington, D.C. area, and beyond.

Among her survivors are her husband, Peter Haney of Lawrence, Kansas and Colorado Springs, parents Eligio and Kathleen Padilla of Albuquerque, sisters Sara Padilla, Amy Padilla and Lisa Padilla Eaton, and brother-in-law Stephen Eaton, all of Albuquerque; and brother-in-law Jake Haney and sister-in-law Kristy Kaiser of Dayton, Ohio. She is also survived by her nephews Alex, Aaron, and Asher Eaton of Albuquerque, Mariyah and Myranda Waits, and grand-nephew Rayden Waits of Richmond, Virginia.

Memorial gifts in lieu of flowers may be sent to Breast Cancer Action and National Mill Dog Rescue. French Funerals and Cremations of Albuquerque, New Mexico, will manage memorial services. Arrangements are pending, and information will be available at

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in The Gazette on Mar. 18, 2014.
Memories & Condolences
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8 entries
March 22, 2014
Your wit and kindness made so many parts of grad school, work, and life so much better. Pete, I never got to
meet you, but I know you were Laura's rock. Sara, Eligio, and Kathleen, I am so very sorry. The few occasions I met you, I felt like family. You are all in my prayers.
Ylce Irizarry
March 21, 2014
Sara, when you spoke of your sister, it was always evident that you were more than just close sisters; you were one soul split in two. I became sick the same year as Laura and always remembered that she insisted on continuing her doctoral studies even through chemo. As I struggled through my PhD in spite of illness, she was a role model for me even though I met her only once. Her resolve was not something I could easily forget. Surround yourself with family. They are all that matters. My thoughts are with you.
Leila Binder
March 21, 2014
Peter, the gonzalez family sends you and the padilla family our deepest thoughts and prayers.
Pablo Gonzalez
March 20, 2014

I am so sorry for your loss. Laura was one of the kindest most compassionate people I've ever known. I will, along with many others miss her tremendously.

Eva Wynhorst
March 20, 2014
So sorry to hear about Laura's passing. Such a loss for all of us, but especially you and your family. Please know that you are in my thoughts. Sincerely, Barbara Whitten
March 20, 2014
On behalf of your colleagues in the KU Unclassified Senate, I'd like to express our deepest condolences. Our thoughts are with you and your loved ones during this difficult time
Mike Krings
Unclassified Senate President
Mike Krings
March 19, 2014
Laura was a wonderful scholar and a lovely person! My thoughts and prayers are with Peter and all of her family.
Teresa Acosta
March 19, 2014
Writing from Austin, Texas where we treasure Laura's memory. May God help Peter, her parents and everyone else in her family family endure these difficult moments.
Emilio Zamora
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