Edna Margaret Lafferty, our beloved mother and dear friend has passed at the age of 92 on April 14, 2011. Edna died from complications due to end stages of Alzheimer's disease. She was born on March 5, 1919 in Ft. Fairfield, Maine and had a wonderful family upbringing. She and her three brothers and three sisters helped on her father's potato farm. From the patience and compassion that her parents instilled in her, Edna developed an added sense of the importance of teaching and made it her life's work. In her youth, she developed many athletic hobbies: skiing, skating, tennis, dancing, and horseback riding which showed off her long flowing red hair. She graduated from high school at the age of 16, received her A.B. from Aroostook State (now known as University of Maine at Presque Isle) in 1939. She began teaching in a one-room schoolhouse (the same schoolhouse she had attended) where she developed her motto of "never give up on any child". She ventured to St. Petersburg, Florida in 1942 and continued teaching. At an art class provided for servicemen coming home from WWII, a young Army Air Corp officer met the class model - a young teacher on Christmas vacation donating time to the cause - Harold Lafferty began a courtship and they were married on June 17, 1945. After moving to Wisconsin, their first son, Harold Edwin Jr. was born one day before their first anniversary. They moved to Hawthorne, California in 1947 and eventually had two more sons: Timothy Tom in 1951 and Barry Brett in 1958. She continued her education and received her Bachelors of Science at U.S.C. in 1953 and her Masters in Education, also from U.S.C. in 1966. Edna was hired by the Wiseburn School District, a small district in Hawthorne and went on to have and incredible career teaching for 46 years. She taught a total of 51 years and only retired at the age of 75. When asked about going so long she replied, "I have the opportunity with another class of students, to help instill a love of learning, to give them a spark that will help them in their future years." How can you measure the worth of an educator who helped to create confidence and pride in students that went on and became more successful students and successful citizens? Fifty-one years adds up to quite a gift to society. Edna was a loving, caring, devoted mother who helped her three sons in many, many ways. She loved to dance, travel, take pictures, and spend time with family and friends. In the last stage of her life, she had a wonderful caregiver, Tina Moore, while she was still at home. For the past year and a half she was under the fantastic and loving care at Belmont Village Assisted Living Facility (in the "Neighborhood") in Palos Verdes. Edna is survived by two of her sons, Timothy (Donna) and Barry. She will be sadly missed but always remembered. A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, April 19, 2011 at Green Hills Memorial Chapel, 27501 S. Western Ave, Rancho Palos Verdes at 11:00 am followed by a graveside service. Please sign the guest book at www.dailybreeze.com/obits.
In lieu of flowers, you may make a donation to the American Alzheimer's Association
Published by Daily Breeze on Apr. 16, 2011.