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Deborah WOOD

1952 - 2017
Deborah WOOD Obituary
WOOD, Clare 1952-2017 Deborah Clare Wood, 65, of Austin, died August 31 after an illness. Well known to and loved by many longtime Austinites, Clare was a resilient caring woman who deeply appreciated her family, friends and pets. No matter her difficulties, it was she who called her friends to check on their well-being. Tenaciously independent, Clare used a wheelchair in her last years but did not let that stop her. She navigated bus routes for grocery shopping and socializing with nary a complaint. Clare was born May 15, 1952, in Belton and grew up in Killeen. Her parents were Samuel Gordon Wood and Joyce Mae Weaver Wood. She was a cheerleader, and a friend recalled how he beamed when he was the guy who drove her around the track as homecoming queen at Killeen High School. Clare had two degrees from UT-Austin, one in psychology, the other in studio art reflecting her wide range of interests. She spent much of her adult life in the service industry at several of Austin's legendary haunts like the Raw Deal, Antone's, Manor Downs race track and the Vogue. She spent seven years as a banquet bartender and caterer at the Four Seasons Hotel. For more than 20 years, she plied her bartending and catering skills for two management vendors at UT's Frank Erwin Center. A bartender extraordinaire, Clare used her psychology degree to read people, whether they were customers or coworkers. She took others' interests and needs to heart. An ardent animal lover, Clare always had too many cats because she simply could not say no to a kitty in need of a home. She even had a fish that lived so long and got so big she bought it a larger tank. Clare delighted in caring for her grandsons and spent many lively hours with them at her apartment. She was especially proud of her daughter's professional photography achievements. Clare was predeceased by her parents, stepfather John Gordon Kuhn and her revered big sister Suzanne Wood Brown. Survivors include her daughter Anja and husband Matthew Temple, grandsons Miles and Elijah, a soon-to-be granddaughter, brother-in-law Kerry Grombacher, nephews Tim Brown and Isaac Grombacher and cousins Diane and Holly Williams. A celebration of Clare's life will be held beginning at 2 p.m. Sunday, September 24, at Threadgill's South, 301 W. Riverside. Memorial donations may be made to Austin Pets Alive, www.austinpetsalive.org.
Published in Austin American-Statesman on Sept. 17, 2017
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