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October 2018
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Liova Fernandez McGill

Liova Fernandez McGill, age 91 of San Antonio, TX died October 15, 2018, in Goodyear, AZ.  She was born September 28, 1927, in San Antonio, TX to Gorgonio and Salome Fernandez.  Liova “Josie” McGill lived a full life of love and dedicated herself to her family and friends.  Being a single mother to eight beautiful children for most of her life, she struggled but persevered to provide and care for her family.  She was a spiritual woman who loved God and her church and spoke often about her faith.  Liova also enjoyed having a good time and the horse races.  She was a committed lady who would help anyone in need to the best of her ability.  She will be missed dearly by her family and friends as she leaves us now to enjoy the next phase of her life in Heaven with her Lord.

Liova is survived by her daughters, Eloisa Quintanilla, Mary Rigal, Irene Bush, Henrietta Garcia, and Darlene Cox; sons, George, Larry, and Jesse Quintanilla; sister Eva Rocha; 15 grandchildren; 23 great-grandchildren; and two great-great-grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by her husband, parents, four sisters, two brothers, one son, and one grandson.

A visitation will begin at 10:15 am followed by a funeral service at 12:15 pm, Friday, October 19, 2018, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  The funeral cortege will follow in procession to West Resthaven Park Cemetery, 6450 W Northern Ave, Glendale, AZ 85301.

Gertrude Buttes

Gertrude Buttes, age 89, of Chandler, AZ died October 14, 2018, in Chandler, AZ.  She was born March 13, 1929, in Antlers, OK to Ernest and Oda May Jack.  Gertrude had a 20-year career at Agua Fria High School.  She raised four sons and had a loving family.  She is survived by her son, Tom Buttes (Jude); brothers, Altus and Clarence Jack; four grandchildren, Melissa (Mike), Lisa (Jason), Sam (Carolina),  and Taylor (Jennifer); and eight great-grandchildren, Audri, Randy, Sam, Jr., Jax, Madison, Gage, Daniel, Katelyn.  She was preceded in death by her husband, George Buttes; and sons, George, Larry, and Carl, and grandson, Chris.

A visitation will be held at 10:00 am, followed by a funeral at 11:00 am, Thursday, October 18, 2018, at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  Burial will be at 12:15 at West Resthaven Cemetery, 6450 W. Northern Avenue, Glendale, AZ  85301.  The family suggests that donations be made to Serenity Hospice.

Jane Purcell

On Saturday, October 13, 2018, Jane Purcell passed away peacefully in her Litchfield Park home of 50 years, surrounded by family.  She was 89 years old.

Born Anna Jane Phelan on January 5, 1929 in her family home in Flagstaff, she was the second of five siblings born to Claude and Willow Phelan, both native Arizonans.  As a child of the Great Depression, Jane’s father worked different jobs in Flagstaff before moving the family to Litchfield Park Air Base (renamed Luke Field in 1941) after it was built in 1940.  Her father worked on base as a plumber and the children attended the local school; with the exception of Jane and brother Claude, Jr., who attended school in Phoenix.  Both children lived as boarders, Claude, Jr. attending St. Mary’s High School, Jane a student at Xavier College Preparatory.  Jane returned home as a senior in high school and attended Litchfield High School.

Upon graduation, she returned to Flagstaff and attended Northern Arizona University.  She excelled academically and played the drums in the Lumberjack Band.  During this time, she met her love, Lloyd Purcell, and they secretly eloped.  They were eventually “found out” and moved in to married housing to complete college.

The couple returned to the west valley, settling in Goodyear, where Jane worked as a secretary at Goodyear Aerospace for a short time.  They reared four daughters and in 1968 moved to Litchfield Park.  Jane returned to work and became the first librarian of Litchfield Park.  Beginning in a one room library with limited circulation, she began to work on a new facility which, ultimately, became the Florence Brinton Memorial Library.  In 1982 she was named the Maricopa County Librarian of the Year.

Jane retired in 1990 and devoted her days to grandchildren, working in her garden with her award winning roses, sewing, quilting, and reading.  Jane never traveled extensively but often said she “traveled by reading books.”  She was an avid “information geek” and her curious nature was usually satisfied through the pages of a book or by studying maps.  Jane was known for her strong political convictions and read her newspapers from cover to cover up until recent days.  She is pre-deceased by her husband Lloyd of 60 years, and her brothers, Claude, Jr. and James.  She is survived by two sisters, Willow Seibert and Peggy Schmid; four daughters, Jan Parkinson, Mary Wagner, Patty Haydis, and Polly Franklin; 13 grandchildren, and 14 great-grandchildren.  Special thanks to the staff of Comprehensive Hospice and Palliative care for their love and support.

Taylor Ann Denny

Heartbroken, the family of Taylor Ann Denny, born April 5, 1996, announces her passing after a tragic car accident on a snowy North Dakota bypass on October 5, 2018. Taylor was just twenty-two years old.

Taylor graduated from Verrado High School in May 2014. With great ambition and a zeal for creativity, Taylor pursued a career in cosmetology while still attending high school, graduating from West-Mec days later. She enjoyed a successful career with Great Clips where she was named “Stylist of the Year” in 2016. Most recently she styled for a loyal client base at Keep It Cut. Taylor was well loved not only by her clients but also by her many friends, as demonstrated by the massive outpouring of their kind words. The tragedy of Taylor’s death has revealed her short life was lived full of love for others, and in return, she was loved immensely.

Taylor’s memory will be cherished always by her parents, Wade Denny and Julie (Frazier) Denny, and her three younger brothers; Kolton, Logan, and Joshua. She is survived by the biological daughter she adored, Jana Renee, who by Taylor’s gift of adoption lives to be her greatest legacy. Taylor is treasured by her large extended family including her three living grandparents; Kathleen Denny and Jim and Delores Frazier, and dozens of aunts, uncles, and cousins. Taylor is predeceased by her grandfather, Charles A. Denny, Jr.

Taylor’s parents and family invite you to a public viewing on Thursday, October 18th from 6-7 PM at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 South Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ 85338.  A Celebration of Life service will be held at Palm Valley Church located at 431 North Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ 85338 on Friday, October 19, 2018. The viewing will begin at 10 AM, followed by a Funeral Service at 11 AM. Graveside services will follow at Greenwood Memory Lawn Cemetery, 719 North 27th Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85009.  Finally, a reception will be held at Wade and Jody Denny’s home at 4282 North 180th Drive Goodyear, AZ 85395.

Manuel Cervantes Galo

Manuel Cervantes Galo, age 76, of Tolleson, AZ died October 8, 2018 in Tolleson, AZ.  He was born January 5, 1942 in Phoenix, AZ to Elias Lawas and Francis Cervantes Galo.  Manuel was a distinguished and selfless member of the Tolleson community.  He often volunteered at senior centers, churches and fed the homeless.  He loved the sport of cockfighting.  He is survived by his wife of 58 years, Lucia Galo; daughters, Bonnie Barriga, Georgina River, Maria Anguis, and Raquel Boyd; sisters, Virginia “Ginger” Farinas, and Gloria “Yoya” Canez; brother, Elias “Pelori” Galo; 15 grandchildren; and 24 great-grandchildren.  He was preceded in death by Elizabeth Galo and Manuel Galo, Jr.

A visitation will be held at 10:00 am followed by a funeral service at 11:00 am, Thursday, October 18, 2018 at Our Lady of Guadalupe Monastery, 8502 W. Pinchot Avenue, Phoenix, AZ.   Burial will follow the funeral service at Holy Cross Cemetery, 9925 W. Thomas Road, Avondale, AZ 85392.

Andres Tomas Elizondo

Andres Tomas Elizondo, age 41, died on October 7, 2018, at his childhood home.  He has joined his parents, Roberto, and Gloria Maria Elizondo.  He was born June 20, 1977, to Roberto and Gloria in Phoenix, AZ.  Andres had a big personality.  Very charismatic, he was a man of many trades.  As a former weightlifter and wrestler, he was intimidating to look at, yet he was gentle and kind of heart.  He cared about everyone and was always looking out for others, especially the little guy.  His ability to easily speak to anyone helped him to know and understand the needs of others.

Andres had a wonderful sense of humor.  He could see the humor in every situation he encountered.  Though he sometimes used his wit to lighten dark times, he also enjoyed the shock value that a joke could bring to any situation that life brought.  Frequently his jokes were at his own expense allowing others a glimpse of his desires to overcome the mistakes he sometimes made in life.  His humor helped to lift discouragement and difficulties and strengthen those around him.

Andres was a great example to others, his brothers and sisters, but especially his children.  He worked hard at teaching them to meet the responsibilities they would need to shoulder in life while avoiding situations that would be dangerous.  He would often use his own life as an example of both success and failure.  He held his children to high standards but was always there to encourage and support them in their activities.  He ensured that they had a strong foundation to grow into independent individuals and always let them know how proud he was of them.

Andres is survived by his two children, Andres Tomas Elizondo, Jr., Natalie Nicole Elizondo; and his older siblings, Roberto Elizondo, Jr., Carlos Elizondo, Alejandra Walker, Antonio Elizondo, Patricia Stecher, Jesus Elizondo, Marcos Elizondo, Aida R. Elizondo, and Juan Elizondo.  A memorial service will be held at 10:00 am, Monday, October 29, 2018, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 13277 W. Thomas Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.

Irene Barker

Irene Barker, age 95 of Avondale, AZ died October 6, 2018, in Avondale, AZ.   She was born March 14, 1923, in Wigan, England to John and Alice Foster.  Irene was raised in England.  In support of the war effort during WWII, she worked at the munitions factory.  She married Eric Barker and in 1948 the newly married couple moved to Bartonville, IL.  Irene was a member of Bethel Lutheran Church in Illinois and sang in the choir for many years.   She and Eric lived in Illinois until 2014 when they moved to Arizona to be closer to family.  The couple was happily married for 70 years.  She was devoted to both her church and her family.

Irene is survived by her son, Brian Barker, three grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Eric Barker.  A visitation will be held at 10:00 am followed by a funeral service at 11:00 am, Friday, October 12, 2018, at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, 918 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear, AZ  85338.  The funeral cortege will follow in procession for burial at West Resthaven Park Cemetery, 6450 W. Northern Avenue, Glendale, AZ  85301.  The family suggests that donations be made to the Dementia Society of America.

Lynn Curtis Schlenker

Lynn Curtis Schlenker, age 73 of Glendale, AZ died October 3, 2018.  He was born January 16, 1945, in Moorhead, Minnesota, and was the only adopted son of Jake and Freida Schlenker who adopted him as a 16-day old infant.  Lynn loved his family very much.  Life in Minnesota offered him everything he desired, friendly people, abundant wildlife, sunshine, rain and especially a place where he could play in the snow with his favorite dog.  When Lynn’s mother decided to move to Sun City, AZ after the death of his father, Lynn thought that it might be a good move for him to make, too.

One day an errand took Lynn to Montgomery Ward.  There a saleswoman by the name of Wanda caught his eye.  He told her that he would like to take her for a ride on his motorcycle and asked for her number.  After his objections when she handed him her business card she asked for it back and wrote her personal number on the back of it.  When her surprised coworkers questioned her about why she would do such a thing, Wanda replied, “He asked me to go for a ride and he’s beautiful!”  Wanda and Lynn were married for 31 great years!  Though at times he could be ornery, he and Wanda had many good times, laughs, and never ran out of things to talk about.

Lynn’s positive outlook on life was a trademark of his character.   He was a commercial truck driver and loved being out on the open road.   In fact, when questioned about his livelihood, Lynn would reply, “I’m an over-the-road paid tourist.”  When not working he could be found traveling the highways on his motorcycle or in his white pick-up truck with his travel trailer.  He rode a motorcycle most of his life and was a member of the Gold Wing Road Riders Association. His traveling took him to nearly every corner of the country.  His love of travel was only rivaled by his enjoyment of trains.  He collected HO scale model trains and had a room dedicated to his railroad layout.

Lynn’s warm, generous attitude endeared him to everyone he met.  His cheerful personality and ability to make friends quickly made him a natural when he worked as a greeter at Wal-Mart.  Those traits, along with his striking looks, also gave him the opportunity to play Santa Claus during the holidays.  He enjoyed being around children and seeing the joy in their eyes.  His stepdaughter particularly remembers his kindness.  He often openly expressed his love to his family and made sure that his stepdaughter knew that he never saw her as a burden, but only as a bonus that came with his love for her mother.

Lynn is survived by his wife, Wanda Schlenker, and daughter, Lorelei Jimenez. He is also survived by three stepchildren.  He was preceded in death by his son, Mark Schlenker.  Lynn was a longtime member of The Church At Litchfield Park.  A memorial service will be held at 10:30 am, Saturday, October 27, 2018, at The Church of Litchfield Park, 300 North Old Litchfield Road, Litchfield Park, AZ 85340.

Mary Louise David

Mary Louise David, of Litchfield Park, AZ died October 3, 2018, in Avondale, AZ.  She was born September 11, 1927, in Provo, UT to Margaret Bird and William Nelson Grooms.  She was the oldest child and had two younger brothers.  She lived in Springville, UT until she was about 10 years old, then moved with her family to Salt Lake City, UT.  She graduated from East High School.   She attended Utah State University for a year and then transferred to the University of Utah where she graduated in Home Economics.

After graduation, Mary Louise worked as a designer of doll clothes for a doll factory in San Francisco.  She met her husband, Jim David, on a blind date which was arranged by a friend.  Jim played the trumpet in the Sixth Army Band.  After their marriage, the couple moved to Washington, D.C. where he attended the Navy School of Music.  Upon discharge, the couple settled in South San Francisco.  Jim joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints after the birth of their first daughter and the family was sealed in the Oakland Temple.  Mary Louise was a stay-at-home mom for their two daughters, Lisa and Louisa.

Mary Louise lived in her home in South San Francisco for 49 years.  In 2006 she moved to Sequim, WA to be near her daughter Lisa.  Several years later she moved again with her daughter to Litchfield Park, AZ.  Though she was happy to be with her daughter and her family, the hot weather never agreed with Mary Louise and she longed to be back in the cool northwest area.

Mary Louise was widely known as “the card lady” because she would send cards to anyone that she met.  Birthday cards, anniversary cards, thank you cards, even thinking-of-you cards were all sent with Mary’s love inscribed.  Mary Louise served as a Relief Society President, a counselor in Relief Society, Stake Primary Secretary, visiting teacher supervisor and Primary teacher.  She enjoyed serving others but being very shy preferred to serve quietly and without notice.  She especially enjoyed teaching her Primary class.

Mary Louise is survived by her daughter, Lisa Davis; brother Roger Grooms; five grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; four step-grandchildren; and four step-great-grandchildren.  She was preceded in death by her husband, Jim David; daughter Louisa; parents, William Nelson and Margaret Bird Grooms; and brother, Boyden Grooms.

A funeral service will be held at 1:00 pm, Monday, October 8, 2018, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 301 W. Wigwam Blvd, Litchfield Park, AZ  85340.

Rosella (Rosie) Johnson-Gardner

Rosella (Rosie) Johnson-Gardner, 84, passed away Tuesday, October 2, 2018, in Goodyear, Arizona. She was born on October 30, 1933, along with twin brother, Frank, to the late Carlton and Pauline (Woodruff) Willeke.

She married Delbert Gerald Johnson on November 23, 1952, and he preceded her in death. On April 30, 1995, she married Thad B. Gardner who also preceded her in death.

Surviving are her children Jeff Johnson, Greg (Tami) Johnson, and Kristie McCarthy. Six grandsons; Matthew (Kylie) McCarthy, Michael Johnson, Nathan McCarthy, Ryan Johnson, Adam Johnson, and Zachary McCarthy. Three great-granddaughters; twins Teagan and Emberly McCarthy, and Keiralyn McCarthy. Numerous nieces and nephews.

She was preceded in death by her two husbands, twin brother Frank (Millie) Willeke, brothers; Vernal Willeke and Wayne Willeke.

Rosie was a retired rural mail carrier and Postmaster at the Ridgeway Post Office. She was a member of the Ridgeway United Methodist Church and their Women’s Group; Rural Carriers Association, League of Postmasters; Silver Star Circle, and Hardin Memorial Hospital Guild.

A private memorial service will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Ridgeway United Methodist Church or Ridgemont Public Library.


Betty Jane Nunez

Betty Jane Nunez, passed away unexpectedly on September 26, 2018.  She was born the youngest of three daughters to Francis Young and Frank Y. Galvan on May 30, 1954, in Tucson, AZ.  Smart, outgoing, kind and beautiful with her green eyes, Betty could make friends in minutes.  In her youth, she was very active in sports.  She ran track and played volleyball and softball, always wanting to be where the action was and surrounded by her friends.  She was a social butterfly, but always took time to listen and comfort others when they needed a friend. She was the one everyone turned to. Betty loved to dance and was a big fan of George Strait.

Betty’s work ethic was undeniable. When life was hard, she would pick herself up and find the strength to rise above her troubles.  She knew how to make the best of what she had!   She worked in the medical field where her compassion was her greatest asset.  As a mother she was selfless, generous and caring, never letting her children go without.  She was very protective of her children and worked hard to teach them good values.  Though she could sometimes be stubborn about her ways, her generosity and love always shined through.  She always made time for her children, and family because they were first in her life.  As her children grew their relationship with her grew from parent/child to buddies to best friends.  Her strength, integrity, and love became the guideposts from which they navigated their lives.

Betty’s love for her children naturally extended to her grandchildren.  The title of “Nana” became her greatest pride and joy! She loved spending time with them and enjoyed attending their school and sporting events.  She made them laugh like no one else could and they made her smile like no one else could.

Betty was taken from this world way to soon, but this extraordinary, beautiful, loving mother and grandmother will forever live in the hearts of her beloved family and friends. The family that she cherished so much, honors her and will miss the best mother, and grandmother they could ever have!  In the words of George Strait, “It’s a love without end, Amen!”

Betty is survived by her daughters, Yvonne Nevarez (Daniel), and Linda Nunez; sons, Alex Mendez (Rosanna) and Carlos Nunez (Leanna); father, Frank Galvan and his wife Carlota; sister, Stella Mae Soto (Manny); brothers, Frank Galvan, and Mark Galvan (Kim); nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild.  She was preceded in death by her mother, Francis Young.

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