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Geraldine Lansford Stilphen

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Geraldine Lansford Stilphen Obituary
GERALDINE LANSFORD STILPHEN Age 94, died peacefully in her sleep, March 7, 2014 in Farmington, NM. Born September 27, 1919 in Strong City, OK, she was the daughter of Dr. and Mrs. E.L. Lansford and sister of Dr. William N. Lansford of Lubbock, TX and the wife of Lee E. Stilphen of Moreno Valley, CA, all of whom predeceased her. She is survived by her three daughters, Rebecca Moulthrop, Susannah Beery, and Sarah Grafton; five grandchildren, Paul Moulthrop, Douglas Beery, Renee Andrew, Kelly Grafton, and Kathleen Swenson; six great grandchildren, Alan Beery, Stanley Andrews, Cody Andrews, Hannah Grafton, Emma Swenson and Elizabeth Swenson; and one great great grandchild, Yvlet Beery and their families. Geraldine earned a BS degree in Home Economics and English at Texas Tech University and a Masters degree in Language Arts, with an emphasis in English as a Second Language at the University of New Mexico. She was teaching Home Economics in La Mesa, TX, when she met and married Lee Stilphen, an electrical engineer, then, a civilian flight instructor at the outbreak of WWII. Upon his return from service as a flight officer in the South Pacific Ferry Command, they moved to Plymouth, NH where he resumed his job as manager of White Mountain Power Co. and where she raised her three daughters and taught high school Home Economics. In 1959, the family moved to Albuquerque, NM, where she taught English and Remedial English at the Albuquerque Indian School and her husband worked in the Department of Plant Design and Construction for the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Upon receiving her MA, she taught junior high school English in Santa Fe and served two years as Bernalillo County Supervisor of Language Arts Instruction for K-8 Remedial Reading Laboratory School and 8 Pueblo Indian School Systems along the Rio Grande River, north of Albuquerque. In 1972, the family moved to Moreno Valley, CA, where she taught Home Economics at continuation high school and for the last 10 years, English as a Second Language for adult school students. Her second passion after teaching was traveling. For 50 years, she traveled all over the world, many times with her daughters and grandson, Paul. Of her teaching career, she once said, "When I was a child growing up in the Methodist Church, I was always impressed by the missionaries who came to speak to my mother's missionary society and it was my way of being a foreign missionary. I always thought that my calling in life was to be a teacher."

Published in Press-Enterprise on Mar. 30, 2014
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