Obituaries

Although your loved one or friend is no longer here in person, they will forever be in our hearts. Find their name, and sign the guest book with a fond memory or note for their family.

Meeks, Alice

Alice Joyce Meeks, 79, of Surprise, Arizona died on May 15, 2015 in Sun City, Arizona.

She was born November 20, 1935 in Denver, Colorado, to Robert and Ruth Newbury.

Ms. Meeks compassionately and lovingly cared for more than 20 foster children over the years in Phoenix.

Ms. Meeks is survived by daughters Michele Bullard and Tamara Melton, 3 grandchildren, and 5 great grandchildren, sister Ann Hixson (passed away May 19, 2015).

Ms. Meeks is preceded in death by her husband J.O. Meeks Jr., parents, grandparents, and son Jackie.

Funeral arrangements entrusted to Thompson Funeral Chapel.  A memorial service to be held in the Fall.  Condolences can be sent to www.thompsonfuneralchapel.com

The family suggest that donations be made to Arizona ASPCA, 25 N. 40th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85034 or the Arizona Humane Society, 1521 W. Dobbins Road, Phoenix, AZ 85041

Davis, Cornelius

Mr. Cornelius Davis, 73, a resident of Buckeye, Arizona died on May 20, 2015 at his home in Buckeye, Arizona of congestive heart failure.

He was born November 13, 1941 to Cornelius Henderson and Lillie Mae Springer in Leland, Mississippi.

Mr. Davis enlisted in the US Air Force and retired after 24 years of service as a MSGT, from the Missile Security Squadron in September 1985.

Mr. Davis received his Associates degree from East Grand Forks Technical College in 1989 and celebrated his second retirement as a Loan Officer for City County Federal Credit Union in Minneapolis, MN.  He was instrumental in the works of his Masonic lodge for over 40 years, holding many offices to include;  Grand Master Prince Hall Grand Lodge Minnesota,  Illustrious Potentate of Fezzan Temple No. 26 of Minnesota, Worthy Grand Patron of Prince Hall Grand Chapter of Minnesota. He was a member of the American Legion and Veteran of Foreign Wars.  In 2010 Cornelius was presented with the key to the City of Leland, MS and in 2013 he was inducted into the North Division High School Athletic Hall of Fame in Milwaukee, WI.

He spent the last seven years enjoying his children and grandchildren, bowling in local and regional tournaments, and vacationing with his wife visiting family and friends throughout the country.

Mr. Davis is survived by his loving wife of  51 years, Novella V. Davis, daughters Donya Davis-Seay and Yvette Davis-McGee, son-in-laws Vor-el  Seay and Rick McGee, half-sisters Sandra Dudley, Valerie Henderson, Diedra Henderson, Joselyn Henderson, and Kristie Thornton, half-brothers Cornelius Henderson Jr. and Carlos Henderson, grandchildren Doree C. Seay, Jordan Davis McGee, and Tor-el Davis Seay, and cousins Sylvia Newman-Hortman and family, and  Ann Davis and family.

Mr. Davis is preceded in death by his parents Cornelius Henderson Sr., Lillie Mae Springer, half-brother Larry Henderson,  aunt Georgia Mae Newman, and uncle Buddy Latimore.

A memorial service and repast will be held August 8, 2015 at 11:30 a.m. located at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Rd., Goodyear, AZ 85338.  Arrangements are under the direction of Thompson Funeral Chapel.  Condolences can be sent to:  cdavis105@cox.net.

Pfordte, Alfred

Alfred Paul Pfordte passed away on May 16, 2015, from non-Hodgkins lymphoma. Al, as he was known to his friends, and Pop by his children, was born on June 16, 1929, in New York, to Elfriede and Adolph Pfordte. Al and his younger sister Eleanor lived in Germany before he enlisted in the Army at 16. Assigned to Bavaria and Austria after WW 2, Al first guarded German POWs and helped recover stolen art. He transferred to the Military Police and ultimately the Criminal Investigation Division (CID).

While stationed in Salzburg, he met and in 1952 married Klementine Trautmann; there also daughter Susan was born. In 1953, Al was transferred to run the CID office at Walter Reed in Washington, D.C., where son Fred was born. Next stop was Fitzsimmons Medical in Denver, where son Richard was born. While at Fitzsimmons, Al was assigned to help protect President Eisenhower, who was recovering from a heart attack. (When Al was a soldier, they had met during a base inspection in Germany.) Al then served a tour of duty in Korea and 3 years in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, before being assigned in 1961 to West Berlin.

The newly built wall divided the city, and Al’s duties regularly put him at Check Point Charlie and other hot spots during that cold war period. For example, Al was one of the American officials on the Glienicke Bridge when Francis Gary Powers was exchanged for Rudolf Abel. His fluency in German and knowledge of the area made him a natural for important tasks with visiting dignitaries, such as tours along the wall or escorting them through communist East Germany on the life line Autobahn to West Germany. As part of the 11th CID, Al was one of the few Americans authorized to visit East Berlin in a personal vehicle, and he frequently inspected the Allied prison in Spandau where notorious war criminals were incarcerated. Al was again assigned to help the Secret Service protect the President, this time John F. Kennedy during his visit to West Berlin in 1963.

Al was transferred to Fort Douglas, Utah, in 1966, where he ultimately headed the CID office, and retired from the Army in 1968 as a Warrant Officer. Employed by Southland Corporation (7-11), Al moved to Arizona in 1970 where he managed the company’s local real estate operations for 22 years. After retiring from Southland, Al suffered the loss of his wife Klementine who passed away in 1992 and his son Fred in 1997. At the end of 1997, Al married Mona Cordner, who had become his best friend. Al devoted his last years taking care of Mona, who passed away earlier this year.

Al leaves behind many grieving friends and family. He is survived by sister Eleanor Anstett of New Jersey, daughter Susan Keller of Goodyear, son Richard of Virginia, grandson Michael Keller of Goodyear, granddaughters Jessica Bustamante of Scottsdale and Elizabeth Ward of Idaho, and great grandchildren Helena Bustamante, Alexander Bustamante, and David Bustamante.

Services will be held at the National Cemetery of Arizona, 23029 N. Cave Creek Road, on May 26, 2015, at 11:00 a.m. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to The Mount of Olives Evangelical Lutheran Church, 3456 E. Thomas Road, Phoenix, AZ, 85018. http://www.mountofolivesaz.org

Glithero, Billie Jean

Mrs. Billie Jeanne Glithero, 69, of Goodyear died May 15, 2015 in Goodyear, Arizona after her courageous battle with cancer.

She was born January 14, 1946, to Vernon and Helen Cheek in Galt, California.

Mrs. Glithero was employed as a Special Agent of the Defense Security Service for the Department of Defense.

She is survived by husband Forrest Glithero, son Richard Allen Hooten, sisters Janey Cheek and Joy Cheek, brother John Cheek, 1 grandchild, and 1 great-grandchild.

She was preceded in death by her parents.

A visitation will be held at 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 13, 2015 at 31435 S. Parker Dam Rd.  Parker, AZ followed by a funeral service. The family intends to scatter ashes across the Colorado River.

Nelson, Harold

Reverend Harold Alexander Nelson, 90 of Cashion, went to meet his maker on May 17, 2015 at 10:15 p.m. at Banner Estrella Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona.

Mr. Nelson was born November 16, 1924 to Roy Nelson and Susan (Black) Nelson in Ferndale, California.

Mr. Nelson was a veteran of the Army, serving from March 1943 –December 1945. His honorable service earned him a bronze star.

Mr. Nelson graduated from the Assembly of God College in San Francisco.  He served as a minister for the Pentecostal Church of God in Arizona for 60 years, until he retired.  He enjoyed serving his fellow man and preaching God’s word.  His interest involved gardening, fishing, and family gatherings.

Mr. Nelson is survived by his wife Wanda L. Nelson, sons David Nelson, Ken Nelson, and Allen Nelson (Teresa), 4 grandchildren, and 4 great-grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by Roy and Susan Nelson, brothers Ken Nelson, Roy Nelson and Don Nelson, sister Vonni.

Visitation service will be Friday, May 22 from 10-11 am, followed by a funeral service at 11:00 a.m. at Desert Springs Worship Center, 10714 W. 4th Street, Cashion, AZ 85329.  Burial at Resthaven Park Cemetery, 6290 W. Northern Ave. Glendale, AZ 85042.  Funeral arrangements provided by Thompson Funeral Chapel.  Condolences can be left at www.thompsonfuneralchapel.com

The family suggests that donations be made to the church of your choice.

Shumway, Flora

Flora Carpenter Shumway, 92, of Surprise Arizona, passed away peacefully in her home on May 18, 2015.

She was born May 3, 1923 in Thatcher, Arizona and was the fifth of sixth children to John Carpenter and Mary Jane Barney.

Flora was an accomplished baker and seamstress who loved her family and dutifully served many callings in the Latter-day Saints Church.

She is survived by her daughters Regna Nelson Cameron (Robert), Marla Stanley, Rhonda Sarager (Martin) and Terri Winter, 23 grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren.

There will be a viewing Friday, May 22nd, 2015 at The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-day Saints on 15880 W. Cactus Rd., Surprise, AZ 85329, from 9-9:45am. Funeral service will begin at 10am. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Hospice of the Valley. Funeral arrangements provided by Thompson Funeral Chapel.

Riojas, Santos

Santos Riojas, 89 of Avondale, passed away peacefully on May 9, 2015.  She will be joining her loving husband Marcos in heaven, where they can continue their love of dancing together. Mrs. Riojas was born October 30, 1925 in Taft, Texas to parents Estanislado and Paula (Gonzales) Rosales.  In 1949 she and her husband Marcos moved to Avondale, AZ and raised 7 children.  She was an avid AZ sports fan, including the Dallas Cowboys.  Lady Luck was always on her side while playing the slot machines at the casinos.  She loved attending the sporting events of her children and grandchildren.  Mrs. Riojas made her food with love and is described as an amazing cook by all, whose kitchen was always open to family and friends.  Mrs. Riojas is survived by her children Enedina “Netty” Valenzuela (Alejandro), Eliezar “Elly” Riojas, Elsa Cruz (Rafael), Elia Gonzales (Gabriel), Elisa, Mike and Mark Riojas, sister Theresa R. Randall, 12 grandchildren, 15 great grandchildren, and 1 great-great grandchild.  She is preceded in death by her husband Marcos Riojas, daughter Graciela Riojas, parents Estanislado and Paula Rosales, brother Miguel Rosales, sister Esperanza Rosales, and grandson David Riojas.  Memorial services will be held Saturday, May 16, 2015. Viewing 9-10 a.m. Mass 11:00 a.m. at Christ Evangelical Luthern Church, 918 S. Litchfield Rd., Goodyear, AZ 85338.  Followed by burial at Resthaven Park Cemetary 6290 W. Northern Ave., Glendale, AZ 85301.

Waters, Ronald Ray

Ronald Ray Waters, 70, a resident of Cashion died on May 10, 2015 in Cashion.  He was born August 5, 1944 in Oakland, CA, to Robert and Bernece Waters. Mr. Waters served in the Army National Guard from July 1965 – 1971.  He was a lifelong church member of Tolleson Assembly of God.  He worked at NAPA Auto Supply, and as a school crossing guard.  He was an avid hunter and fisherman. Waters is survived by his wife Bonita Lynn Waters, sons Lonnie Ray Waters and Timothy Wayne Waters, brother Robert F. Waters, as well as 4 grandchildren Jordan, Shelby, Hannah, and Kylie, his mother-in-law Mary Jo McCully, and many nieces, nephews, and cousins.  He was preceded in death by his parents.  Visitation was held 10-11 on Wednesday, May 13th at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Rd, Goodyear, AZ.  Funeral services were at 11:00am on Wednesday, May 13th at Thompson Funeral Chapel.  Military burial will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery, 10045 W. Thomas Rd, Avondale, AZ.  The family suggest donation be made to Hospice of the Valley.

Dalton, Deliliah

Delilah Lorraine Dalton, 81, of Avondale died May 5, 2015 in Avondale, Arizona.  Mrs. Dalton was born September 12, 1933 in Harris, Oklahoma to John E. Young and Arie Young.  She moved to Arizona in 1998 from San Bernadino, California.  Mrs. Dalton was employed as a Certified Nurse Assistant and Home Health Aide and made sure to serve her patients with great care.  Mrs. Dalton earned a degree in Cosmetology, and was a licensed member of the Board of Barbering and Cosmetology. She enjoyed fishing, sewing and baking. She especially loved to be surrounded by family and friends.  She is survived by her daughters, Yolanda Merritt and Charmaine Dalton, her son Raymond Dalton Jr., son-in-law Curtis Merritt, sisters Diane Fox and DorothyWittington, brothers Charles Horton Jr. and Stephen Horton, and grandchildren Raymond A. Dalton, Veronica Dalton, Alondra L. Merritt, and Andre L. Merritt.  She is preceded in death by her daughter-in-law Susan Dalton.  Visitation will be held at 5:30 -7:30 pm on Thursday, May 14th at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Rd, Goodyear, AZ.  Funeral services will be at 4:00 pm on Friday, May 15th at Thompson Funeral Chapel.

Dreuth, Leroy

Leroy “Lee” Edward Dreuth, Born: January 6, 1934 – Chicago, Illinois, Died: May 8, 2015 – Goodyear, Arizona. He was born January 6, 1934 in Chicago, Illinois at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital to John and Ruth (Schetling) Dreuth. He skipped the second and seventh grade before graduating high school at 16 years old. One year later, instead of taking an offer from the St. Louis Cardinals to join their minor league system, he followed his passion in music and left home traveling the country as a musician. He continued this passion in teaching trumpet in later years. After 3 years on the road, he joined the Army and later used the GI Bill to complete his Bachelor’s degree from Roosevelt University. With a passion for teaching, it was no surprise that he became a teacher and coach. He started his career in the Chicago school system before moving to Francis W. Parker where he spent 47 years as a teacher and coach. He educated many boys and girls in sixth grade and in high school soccer, golf, and bowling. He even taught swimming at the summer camp even though he could not swim. While not having any children of his own at this time, he felt that many of the students he taught were like his children and many reciprocated the feeling by looking to him as a father figure. Along with teaching and music, he had a great love for golf in both instructing and playing. He held course records at both Edgebrook and Weber Park Golf Courses. While teaching at many courses around the area, you could always find him at Monty Levinson’s Golf Pro Shop with a huge smile. In 2008, he got to fulfill a life goal of traveling to and play at St. Andrews in Scotland. Lee is survived by his wife Pauline; son John; daughter-in-law Donna; grandson James; sister-in-law Sally (Ted) Harris, brother-in-law Fred (Kelly Turner) Pusateri, late brother-in-law Michael (Deborah) Pusateri, nieces Katherine (Kermit Ruegamer) Burik; Martha (Roy) Fewell; Laura (Marvin) Zehman; Kathi (Frank) Mungo; Cari (Jeff) Bean; Cimberly (Kevin) Hardt; nephews Christopher (Catherine) Pusateri; George (Linda) Harris; great nieces Marissa Burik; Olivia Dreuth; great nephew Matthew Dreuth. He was preceded in death by his brother Roger (Lenore). Memorial donations may be made to Francis W. Parker School Scholarship Fund in memory of Lee Dreuth. Francis W. Parker School Scholarship Fund 330 West Webster Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60614. Funeral serivce times to be determined.

 

Aguirre, Julia

Julia C. Aguirre, 83, of Avondale, Arizona died May 4, 2015 in Goodyear, Arizona after a courageous battle with cancer. Mrs. Aguirre was born February 6, 1932 in Litchfield Park, Arizona to Hilario Carrillo and Aureli Noriega. She moved to Arizona in 1947. Mrs. Aguirre was employed in 1968 by Buckeye Union High School, and Tolleson Industries in 1972, as a sewing instructor.  She also enjoyed her work as a greeter at Walmart for 16 years.  Mrs. Aguirre served as a member of the State Board ASC Fire Fighters of Arizona.  She was preceded in death by her husband of more than 55 years, Victor Aguirre.  Visitation and Rosary will be held at 6:30pm on Sunday, May 10th at Thompson Funeral Chapel.  Funeral Mass will be held at 10am on Monday, May 11th at St. John Vianney Parish in Goodyear, AZ.

Silva, Lupe

Lupe B. Silva, 84, a resident of Tolleson died on May 2, 2015 in Goodyear.  Silva was born January 5, 1931 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to Miguel and Josefina Benavidez. Silva was a seamstress for 25 years.  Silva was a member of the Coldwater Springs Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses.  Silva is survived by sons Frank Silva Jr. and Ricardo Silva, daughters Virginia Perez (Jesse) and Angelina Silva Tarango as well as 18 grandchildren, 31 great grandchildren and 3 great-great grandchildren.  Silva is preceded in death by her husband Frank Silva, sons Ernesto Silva and Alberto Silva, and daughter Veronica “Betty” Silva.  Visitation will be held from 2-5 pm on Saturday, May 9th at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Rd, Goodyear, AZ.  Funeral services will be at 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 9th at Thompson Funeral Chapel.

Penny, Pamela Jo

Pamela Jo Penny, 65, of Phoenix, formerly of Tolleson, Arizona, died on May 6, 2015. Ms. Penny was born on February 13, 1950 to GW Canfield and Gracie Canfield in San Antonio, TX. She moved to Arizona in 1957. Ms. Penny was a graduate of Carl Hayden High School. Ms. Penny was a faithful member of the Church on Fillmore in Phoenix. She is survived by her daughter Jodi Gunning, sister Terry Tait, brother Berry Canfield, and parents GW & Gracie Canfield, as well two grandchildren Jessie Gunning and Gracie Gunning. Funeral services will be at 9:00am on Saturday, May 9th at Thompson Funeral Chapel.

Romero, Jesus

Jesus “Jesse” Romero, 77, a resident of Avondale died on May 2, 2015 in Avondale. Romero was born January 7, 1938 in Litchfield Park, Arizona, to Francisco Romero and Ermerjilda Arrola Garcia. Romero was a veteran of the U.S. Army. In his early years he worked at Goodyear Farms. In his later years he served his calling from God as Bishop at The Church of God. Romero is survived by his wife, Juanita Romero, sons Jesse Romero and Juaquin Romero, daughters Hope Murphy, Alice Romero, Rebecca Romero, and Lydia Romero, as well as 18 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren. He is also survived by his sisters Lupe Gonzales and Christina Marruffo. He was preceded in death by his parents.  Visitation will be held at 5:30pm on Thursday, May 7th at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Rd, Goodyear, AZ. Funeral services will be at 10:00am on Friday, May 8th at Thompson Funeral Chapel. Military burial will follow at Goodyear Farms Historical Cemetery, 12701 W. Indian School Rd, Avondale, AZ.

Nagy, Ernie

Ernie Nagy, 82, of Unit 18 passed away on April 30th from complications of cerebral thrombosis. Ernie earned a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Kettering University (formerly GMI) and then spent the next four years in the U.S. Navy. He was sent to Officer’s Candidate School in Rhode Island and then to flight training in Pensacola, Florida, spending the last part of his Navy service in the Pacific. Upon completion of his military service he returned to the auto industry where he spent the next 35 years working in various engineering capacities. He retired in 1994 and the family came to PebbleCreek as snowbirds, later becoming full-time residents. Ernie was an avid golfer and originating member of the Wild Bunch golf group. He once had a score of 66 on the Eagles Nest course. The family had enjoyed multiple skiing trips to Colorado and northern Michigan. Ernie was a lifetime member of the Westgate-Cyrus Masonic Lodge. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Marilyn, daughter Lisa (Michigan) and sisters Margaret (Bob) Kochevar and Elvira Perac of Michigan and sister and brother in law Doreen and Jerry Toohey of PebbleCreek. Services will be private in Michigan with a Celebration of Life at a later time. Condolences can be sent to the family at www.thompsonfuneralchapel.com. Donations may be made to Hospice of the Valley, 1510 E. Flower Street, Phoenix, AZ 85015 with a requested donation to their Gardiner Home.

Carden, Vivett Neil

Mr. Vivett Neil Carden, 52, of Goodyear Arizona, died April 28th 2015 in Avondale Arizona due to an unforeseen medical complication. He was born on August 23rd, 1962 to Dickie Jo Carden & Beverly Carden in Cairo, Il. The family lived in East Prairie, Missouri, where Neil grew up, and began being known as Neil to his friends and family. Neil was a man who loved adventure. This led him to be an avid racecar driver and rodeo roper. He not only raced the cars he drove; he built them. He had a life long love of all things mechanical, from cars, to motorcycles, to go-karts. He chose his career accordingly and worked as a mechanic of heavy machinery, most recently at Road Machinery. He was a kind, warm, welcoming person, who was always quick with a joke and a helping hand. His friends and family will inexpressibly miss him. He is survived by his wife Hope Carden, his daughter Kristin Carden, his son and daughter-in-law Steven & Jennifer Carden, and his grandchildren Zachary Bliven, Mackenzie Carden,and Mikayla Carden. He is also survived by his step children, Courtnay, James and Matt Hough and their families, his sister Lana & Kelly St Clair and his niece Jamie and nephew Sean, his mother Beverly Carden, and grandmother Irma Crecelius. A memorial service will be held at the First Southern Baptist Church in Avondale, AZ this Saturday. Those wishing to attend should contact the family.

Chisum, Rose

Rose Chisum, 57, of Goodyear, died April 27, 2015 in Goodyear, AZ. She was born October 14, 1957 in Healdsburg, CA to two loving beautiful people Betty and James Edwards. She moved to Goodyear, AZ when she was little and was raised with 2 brothers and a sister. Rose graduated from Agua Fria High School and later moved to Chino Valley, AZ where she raised 4 amazing children in her likeness. She then moved back to Goodyear, AZ to take care of her parents in their time of need. She remained in Goodyear helping raise her grandchildren. She was everything to everyone who needed her. She will be greatly missed and never forgotten.  A celebration of life will be held at 2pm on Saturday, May 9th at Big G, 307 N. 2nd Pl, Avondale, AZ 85323.

Elijew, Walentina

Walentina (Val) Elijew passed away at the age of 85 on April 28 in her home in Goodyear, AZ. She was born August 8, 1929 in Dnipropetrovsk, Russia to Olga Mikschewitsch. Friends and family rushed to bid their farewells during her final days, and she was surrounded by the warmth of their love, laughter and good cheer. She departed this world just hours after her last visitors flew home. Val will forever be remembered for her wonderful sense of humor, and her generous and caring heart. We’ll miss you Mom, but are happy in the knowledge that you are finally at peace. Val is survived by her daughter Anna McIntosh (David McIntosh), son Alexander Elijew (Charlene Elijew), sister-in-law Lena Mikschewitsch, three grandchildren, Ryan Gauvin, Stephanie Gnoza (Stephen Gnoza), Douglas Elijew. She was preceded in death by her husband Wladimir Elijew, mother Olga Mikschewitsch, and brother Wladimir Mikschewitsch. Memorial services will be held at 10:30 am on Sunday, May 3rd at Thompson Funeral Chapel.

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