Sharon A. Maples May 24, 1937 - June 7, 2014 SOUTH BEND - Sharon Ann Merrill Maples, age 77, of Las Cruces, New Mexico, passed away on June 7, 2014. Sharon was born to Russell Jennings Merrill and Jean Elizabeth Enyert Merrill on May 24, 1937, in South Bend, Indiana. She married Richard (Dick) Maples on July 6, 1957, in Mishawaka, Indiana. While growing up, Sharon was active in Campfire Girls - earning all the beads. She was a Campfire Girls Camp Waterfront Staff Swim Instructor every summer. She was active in the theater. She liked square dancing, band, swimming, volleyball, and badminton. Sharon was an avid reader and loved cooking. She had many hobbies and a wonderful sense of humor. Sharon graduated from Mishawaka High School, attended Purdue University, Indiana University, Highland Community College, and graduated from NMSU. She was a member of Tri Kappa Beta Sigma Phi, Sigma Kappa Life member, March of Dimes chairperson in Stephenson County, IL, and March of Dimes Ways and Means Commission in Las Cruces, NM. She was active in Blackhawk Elementary PTA, Youth Leader at First Presbyterian Church in Freeport, IL, a Girl Scout and Brownie Leader, participated with the Jaycettes in Freeport and went on to Baltimore as a Co-Chair representing the State of Illinois. Her working career was varied, but she worked well with her degree in Social Work. She was Director of the Las Cruces Family YMCA, where she took pride in offering many activities for children in the community, doing so without having the convenience of a YMCA building. She carried these programs to HELP-New Mexico, Inc. after the YMCA closed. She touched the lives of many children throughout her life. She loved and cared for them all. Sharon strived for children to experience and be exposed to a lot of learning through various fun activities in order to reach their full potential and become well-rounded, informed adults. Sharon was preceded in death by both of her parents, grandmother, brother Douglas C. Merrill, and her husband, Dick. She is survived by two sons: Thomas O. (Robin) Maples of Las Cruces, New Mexico, and Richard A. (Julia) Maples of Danville, Virginia, and a daughter, Elizabeth A. (Ben) Edwards, of Las Cruces, New Mexico; five grandchildren: Matthew R. Maples of Billiard, Ohio, Jacob A. Maples of Danville, Virginia, Jeffrey T. (Erika) Maples of Jacksonville, Florida, Katherine A. (Michael) Sanchez of Las Cruces, New Mexico, and Michelle L. Maples of Las Cruces, New Mexico; and three great-grandchildren: Nikolas C. Maples of Greenville, Ohio, Nathaniel T. Maples and Anorah M. Maples of Jacksonville, Florida. Our family wishes to extend our heartfelt gratitude for the loving care given by the staff at Casa Bella Assisted Living and Ambercare Hospice. A visitation will be held on Friday, June 20, 2014, from 7-9 pm, at the La Paz-Graham Funeral Home. We encourage you to please wear red in memory of Sharon. A private service will be held for family at another time.
Published by South Bend Tribune on Jun. 17, 2014.