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Obituaries - January 11, 2017

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Francis Xavier Abel

Francis Xavier Abel, 74, of Goodyear died Nov. 16, 2016.

Mr. Abel was born Aug. 17, 1942, in Cleveland, to Frank and Cecilia.

He attended Ohio University in Athens, Ohio.

He joined the U.S. Air Force in 1962 and was honorably discharged after serving for four years.

He worked in sales as an independent representative and owner of his own business, Double Eagle Sales, with his wife for the last 15 years.

They moved to Arizona, and lived in PebbleCreek in Goodyear for the past 11 years.

He was preceded in death by one daughter, Cecily.

He is survived by his wife of 21 years, Jackie; one daughter, Stacy; one brother, Dick; his stepchildren; and his grandchildren.

A celebration of life will be at 1 p.m. Jan. 21 at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, 400 S. Old Litchfield Road, Litchfield Park, followed by a reception at the church’s Celebration Hall. Interment will be at 10 a.m. Jan. 23 at the National Memorial Cemetery, 23029 N. Cave Creek Road, Phoenix.

Memorials may be made to St. Peter’s Episcopal Church or Hospice of the Valley.

Condolences for the family may be left at


Darryl Crossman

Darryl H. Crossman, 64, of Litchfield Park died Jan. 6, 2017.

Mr. Crossman was born Oct. 18, 1952, in Cleveland to Howard and Mary Crossman.

He graduated from high school in Wickliffe, Ohio.

He earned three degrees from Cleveland State University —

a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the school’s Fenn College of Engineering, a master’s degree in public administration and a law degree from the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law.

He served as director of public services for Wickliffe for 28 years. He moved to Arizona in 2004 and served as city manager for Litchfield Park for more than 12 years.

He is survived by his wife, Jacque; two sons, Rich and Matthew; one daughter, Mary Arnold; and four grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held Jan. 20 at New Promise Church in Kirtland, Ohio, with interment at Kirtland South Cemetery.

A memorial service will also be at 10 a.m. Jan. 27 at Skyway Church, 14900 W. Van Buren St., Goodyear.


Ila Marie Denny

Ila Marie Denny, 93, of Litchfield Park died Dec. 20, 2016, at the La Loma Village Health and Rehabilitation Center in Litchfield Park.

Mrs. Denny was born Oct. 21, 1923, in Moorhead, Iowa, to Martin and Hannah Sorensen Johnson.

She graduated in 1941 and moved to San Francisco, where she worked at an air base and met her husband, Robert M. Denny. They married on July 5, 1947, and were stationed at bases around the world before retiring to Litchfield Park.

She was a member of the Church at Litchfield Park.

She is survived by her husband, Robert M. Denny.

A memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Jan. 20 at the Church at Litchfield Park, 300 N. Old Litchfield Road, Litchfield Park.

Memorials may be made to the Church at Litchfield Park.

Condolences for the family may be left at


Charles ‘Chuck’ Emmett Eubanks III

Charles “Chuck” Emmett Eubanks III, 40, of Buckeye died Jan. 8, 2017, in Phoenix.

Mr. Eubanks was born June 28, 1976, in San Diego to Donna Reheis and Charles Eubanks II.

He is survived by his wife, Andrea Eubanks; two sons, Easton and Reed Eubanks; his mother, Donna Reheis; his father, Charles Eubanks II; his stepfather, Steve Reheis; his stepmother, Tracy Eubanks; and one brother, Spencer Reheis.

A memorial service will be at 10 a.m. Saturday at Thompson Funeral Chapel, 926 S. Litchfield Road, Goodyear.

Condolences for the family may be left at


John Faris

John Faris, 82, of Glendale and formerly of Avondale died Dec. 24, 2016.

Mr. Faris was born Sept. 16, 1934, in St. Louis, Mo., to John Claire Faris and Helen Hart Faris.

He graduated in 1952 from Maplewood-Richmond Heights High School in Mapleton, Mo. He graduated in 1957 from Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Okla., and earned a master’s degree in music education in 1964.

He served in the Naval Reserves.

He and his first wife, Cleta, moved to Phoenix and he became a music teacher at Tolleson Elementary, then moved to Tolleson Union High School, where he was band director. In 1965, he moved to Agua Fria High School in Avondale, where he taught band and choir and formed the first high school handbell choir in Arizona. He taught handbells at Phoenix College, where he also taught the Monday Night Band. He retired from high school music in 1990.

He was named the 1972 Music Educator of the Year and received the Distinguished Service Award from the Arizona Music Education Association and the Ring of Fame Award from the Handbell Musicians of America. He received the Glendale Summer Band Director Emeritus Award and the Glendale Rotary Club’s Matt O. Hanhila Inspirational Educator Award.

He served as music minister at First Baptist Church in Phoenix, Lakeview United Methodist Church in Sun City and various other churches.

He held positions with the Billy Moore Days Parade in Avondale and was creator of the Tolleson city seal and conductor of the CASillons community choir in Avondale and the Glendale Summer Band. He was a member of the Tolleson Lions Club, the Tolleson Community Boosters, the Phoenix Youth Symphony, the Fiesta Bowl National Pageant of Bands and the Glendale Rotary Club, serving as president from 2013 to 2014.

He is survived by his second wife, Dana; one son, Craig; one daughter, Susan Faris; seven grandchildren; and 11 great-grandchildren.

Funeral services were Jan. 3 at First United Methodist Church of Glendale.

Memorials may be made to the Glendale Rotary Club, P.O. Box 987, Glendale, AZ 85301.

Condolences for the family may be left at


Thurston L. Gaines Jr.

Thurston L. Gaines Jr., 94, of Murrieta, Calif., and formerly of Litchfield Park died Dec. 31, 2016, in Murrieta.

Dr. Gaines was born in Long Island, N.Y., where he attended school.

He earned a scholarship to Drake University in Iowa, but chose to attend Howard University in Washington, D.C.

He was an original Tuskegee Airman, was accepted into the Negro Cadet Corps at Tuskegee Army Airfield in 1943 and graduated a year later as a flight officer. He was assigned to the 99th Pursuit Squadron and deployed in January 1945 to Europe, where he flew the P-51 Mustang. He joined the “Red Tails” of the 332nd Fighter Group and flew combat missions against the German Luftwaffe in February 1945. On April 15, 1945, he was shot down by anti-aircraft fire on his 25th combat mission over Erding, Germany, where he was captured by the Germans and held prisoner in two German jails and a prison camp before being liberated in June 1945 by Gen. George S. Patton’s 14th Armored Division.

He received numerous military honors, including the Purple Heart and the Congressional Gold Medal, presented by President George W. Bush in March 2007 in Washington, D.C.

He graduated from New York University in 1948 and Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn.

He spent 17 years as a general surgeon in Long Island, N.Y., then served for a decade as a hospital administrator and medical examiner for Nassau County, N.Y. He later served as medical director of a veterans hospital in Massachusetts.

When he retired, he moved to Missouri City, Texas, in 1988, and later to Arizona, living in Sun City West and Litchfield Park.

He returned to work as a phlebotomist and adjunct college professor in naturopathic medicine. He also completed several computer courses at a local junior college and worked as a middle school substitute teacher.

He was a founding member of the Archer-Ragsdale Arizona Chapter, Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., chartered in Phoenix in 2006, and was active in its youth outreach program.

He recently moved to Murrieta, Calif.

He is survived by his wife of nearly 73 years, Jacqueline K. Gaines; three children, Beverly, Terry and William; and six grandchildren.

Funeral services are pending.


Genaro R. Lazarin

Genaro R. Lazarin, 78, of Avondale died Jan. 6, 2017, at Abrazo West Campus in Goodyear.

Mr. Lazarin was born Sept. 16, 1938, in La Union, N.M., to Maria Chavez.

He was employed as a construction worker.

He is survived by his wife, Elisa Valdez Lazarin; five sons, Tony, Andy, Jerry, Marty and Jimmy Lazarin; four brothers, Tim, Ralph, Santos and John Chavez; one sister, Alice Heffner; 14 grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

A visitation will be at 10 a.m., with a rosary recital at 11 a.m. and service at 11:30 a.m. Friday at Holy Cross Catholic Funeral Home, 9925 W. Thomas Road, Avondale, followed by interment at Holy Cross Catholic Cemetery.


Effie Mable Mitchell

Effie Mabel Mitchell, 98, of Avondale died Dec. 28, 2016, in Avondale.

Mrs. Mitchell was born Feb. 14, 1918, in Crockett, Texas, to Leroy and Sallie Ellis.

She moved to Arizona in 1948.

She worked as a cook and secretary.

She was a member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

She was preceded in death by her husband, John Mitchell; and one daughter, Jacqueline.

She is survived by three sons, Bobby Mitchell, Ronald Mitchell and Johnny Mitchell; three daughters, Sally Nimer, Shirley King and Patricia Ijidakinro; one brother, Roger Ellis; one sister Mozelle Watkins; 28 grandchildren; 14 great-grandchildren; and eight great-great-grandchildren.

Funeral services were Jan. 7 at Kingdom Hall of Jehovah’s Witnesses in Goodyear, with Osie Early officiating. Interment was at Greenwood Memorial Lawn in Phoenix.

Memorials may be sent to P.O. Box 122 Avondale, AZ 85323.


This obituary is being reprinted to correct information and the photo. The View regrets the errors.


Bobbie Sue Ray

Bobbie Sue Ray, 79, of Goodyear died Dec. 20, 2016.

Mrs. Ray was preceded in death by her husband, Whitey.

She is survived by two sons, Ron and Scott; one daughter, Leslye Shanberg; two sisters, Margie and Kathi; three brothers, Dennis, Rod and Chuck; seven grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

A celebration of life will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 18 at Scott’s home.

Condolences for the family may be left at


Olga Reimer

Olga Reimer, 85, of Litchfield Park died Jan. 4, 2017, in Goodyear.

Ms. Reimer was born Dec. 13, 1931, in Rocky Rapids, Alberta, Canada.

She is survived by one son, Terrance; two daughters, Patricia and Sandra; one brother, Walter; seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Funeral services will be at 9:30 a.m. today at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona, 23029 N. Cave Creek Road, Phoenix.

Condolences for the family may be left at


Pedro ‘Pete’ Sanchez Sr.

Pedro “Pete” Sanchez Sr., 80, of Calexico, Calif., and formerly of Avondale died Jan. 6, 2017, in Calexico.

Mr. Sanchez was born Nov. 19, 1936, in Karnes City, Texas, to Federico and Bernardina Sanchez.

He moved to Arizona in 1941.

He worked as a field supervisor.

He was a member of Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Calexico, Calif.

He is survived by his wife, Virginia Lara Sanchez; three sons, Pete Jr. of Calexico, Calif.; Paul of Escondido, Calif., and Mark of Calexico, Calif.; two daughters, Lupita of Rancho Bernardo, Calif., and Frances of Oceanside, Calif.; three brothers, Tony, Joe and Nacho; three sisters, Mary, Cleo and Paulina; 13 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.

Services will be Friday at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church in Calexico, Calif., followed by interment at Mountain View Cemetery in Calexico.


Bert Eugene Williams Jr.

Bert Eugene Williams Jr., 61, of Tolleson died Jan. 4, 2017, in Phoenix.

Mr. Williams was born Oct. 18, 1955, in Kansas City, Mo., to Bert Sr. and Lillian Williams.

He is survived by four siblings, Paulette, Lillian, Sonny and Jonni.

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

Condolences for the family may be left at


Paid Obituaries


Mary Irene (nee Harness) Crowell

October 11, 1937 – December 8, 2016

Mary Irene (née Harness) Crowell passed away peacefully in her home in Goodyear, AZ on December 8, 2016 with her loving family at her side.

Mary was born on October 11, 1937 and raised with her younger brother Francis in Walworth, WI. She graduated from Walworth High School in 1955 and then attended Milton College. She met and married Doug Crowell in 1957. Mary was a loving and dedicated mom to her three daughters, supporting their many activities, encouraging them to spread their wings through new adventures and experiences, and making their home a gathering place for all their friends with her fun-loving humor.

Her love of travel in the early years was met through numerous family trips, crisscrossing the country with their camper trailer, leaving enduring memories of favorite places such as the Grand Tetons. Visits to her brother’s postings and career events reflected their special bond. In later years, she broadened her travels to Alaska, Hawaii, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, Korea, and the Caribbean.

She was a master organizer who loved hosting family, friends and Coach Crowell’s sports teams, and had renowned passion for detail making these events special and memorable. After the devastating loss of her daughter Cherie, Mary’s faith and strength enabled her to continue on and eventually serve as an example for everyone she knew and met.

She worked in early childhood education and served as a special education instructor at Westmer Junior High, Joy, IL during which time she also graduated from Blackhawk College, Moline, IL.

She loved being involved with the community, as an original organizer for the Aledo Rhubarb Festival, teaching Sunday school, working at church summer camps and vacation bible schools, assisting children’s reading at her grandchildren’s’ schools, and many other capacities. She was passionate about her hobbies and group activities. She was an accomplished seamstress, quilter, stamper and scrapbooker and thrived on her book club, bible studies and social outings, such as her Sugar and Spice get-togethers.

Mary was her grandsons’ number one sports fan, with Christopher in Seattle, and with the younger boys after her move to Arizona.

Mary was predeceased by her mother and father, Jennie Baars (Ed) and Elmer F. Harness and daughter Cherelynn Hyett. She is survived by her husband of 59 years, Doug Crowell, her daughters Kayla Baretta (John, Gig Harbor, WA) and Michele Kerfoot (Doug, Goodyear, AZ), brother Rear Admiral USN (Ret.) Francis Harness (Marti, Cedarville, MI), sister Linda Johnson (John, Land O Lakes, FL ), her grandchildren, for whom she had a profound love, Christopher Baretta (Charleston, SC), Alexander, Andrew and Zachary Kerfoot, and her ‘bonus’ grandchildren Paul Kerfoot (Canmore, AB) and Patricia (Kerfoot) Burke (Washington, DC), her dear aunt, Ruby Harness (Walworth, WI), as well as her cousins, brothers/sisters-in-law, many special nieces and nephews, and her feisty dog, Bailey. She will be dearly missed by her numerous friends, for whom she had the true gift of making each and everyone feel special.

The family would like to thank, in particular, The Church at Litchfield Park pastors, Dr. Clarence Adoo and staff at the AZ Cancer Care Center, Dr. Ramit K. Sharma, the staff at the Boswell Outpatient Infusion Center, and the many other medical staff for their love and support over the past several months.

In lieu of flowers, Mary’s wish is for donations to be made to The Church at Litchfield Park children’s programs or the Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS) Foundation. A memorial service will be held 2:00 p.m. Saturday, January 14, 2017 at the Church at Litchfield Park. Condolences may be sent to the family at A memorial service will also be arranged in Aledo, IL at a later date.


Cristina Rivas Santisteban Srinivasiah

We are heartbroken to announce the death of Cristina Rivas Santisteban Srinivasiah, 67, of Goodyear, Arizona. Cristina passed away on January 4, 2017, surrounded by her family.

Born on June 16, 1949 in Chiclayo, Peru, Cristina’s loving reach spanned across multiple countries, and she leaves behind many people who were touched by her sweet spirit. She was a woman of many talents, and her professions included public relations, librarian, counselor, and most importantly mother.

Cristina was an avid gardener and also loved sewing, video games, listening to music, and serving the Lord. She was a dedicated member of Desert Springs Community Church, and found invaluable friends with her God’s Gals group.
Diagnosed with cancer in 2014, Cristina bravely lived through the disease with the tenacity she was known for all her life. Cristina is survived by two children, Robert and Grace, as well as her siblings, Juan Santisteban, Maria Santisteban, and Victoria Falero. Although her influence will continue to be felt, she will be dearly missed.


Peggy Braidfoot

Peggy Braidfoot 1937-2016 Born to Jimmy and Wilma Duncan in Little Field, Texas. Peggy passed away peacefully on November 22, 2016 she was a wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, sister and Aunt.

Peggy 78 years old, was the beloved wife of Ronald Braidfoot. The mother of Kathy Simpson, Lorraine Toye, Lisa Hitzler, James Borum, Cathleen Owens, Mistylynn Hernandez. The sister to Vonda Garrison and Jimmy Duncan. A Grandmother of many, great grandmother and Aunt.

She loved the Lord with all her heart. She loved her family greatly. She will be greatly missed by all who knew her and loved her.

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