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Audrey Fay (Morford) Stubbart

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Audrey Fay (Morford) Stubbart

DeAnna Burghart (View posts)
Posted: 15 Nov 2000 5:00AM GMT
Classification: Obituary
Surnames: Stubbart, Morford, DeBarthe
From the Independence Examiner, 15 Nov 2000.

Audrey Fay Stubbart, 105, Independence, died Monday, Nov. 13, 2000, at The Groves care facility in Independence.

Mrs. Stubbart was born June 9, 1895, in Newman Grove, Neb., to Francis A. and Etta Belle Morford. She attended schools in the area and played the violin in the Graceland College orchestra during her adolescence. She earned a diploma via correspondence from the American School in Chicago. On Feb. 1, 1911, she married John Stubbart, and they moved to Wyoming in 1916 to homestead a sheep ranch.

While living in Wyoming, she served as a midwife for neighboring families and earned a teaching certificate from the University of Wyoming. She taught in a one-room school house for several years. In 1944, she and her husband sold their Wyoming ranch and moved to Independence, where John worked as a carpenter. He preceded her in death at the age of 75 in 1965.

As Independence residents, the Stubbarts joined the congregation at what is now known as the New Walnut Park RLDS Church. She was a member of the church choir until well past her 100th birthday. She also taught Sunday school at the church for more than 15 years and is credited as being the driving force to retain early morning prayer meetings on Sundays. She was an active member of the monthly Potluck Club at the church since its beginning 15 years ago. She routinely memorized a new poem from her collection of the classics for recitation at each monthÕs dinner.

Active with a number of clubs and service organizations, Mrs. StubbartÕs memberships in recent years included the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Knife and Fork Club, the Jackson County Historical Society and the Foundation for Research on Ancient America. An avid supporter of the fine and performing arts, she attended every annual performance of ÒThe MessiahÓ at the RLDS Auditorium from 1945 through 1999. She was in the 1983-84 edition of WhoÕs Who of American Women. She had also been a member of the American Pen WomenÕs Guild and the Women in Communications, where she was honored in 1983 at a special banquet in Kansas City.

She worked as a proofreader for the Herald House Publishing Co. in Independence from June 1945 until Labor Day weekend 1961. She had been given mandatory retirement notice from the publishing house the year before when she turned 65, but she was allowed to stay on until a replacement was hired and trained.

The day after Labor Day in 1961, Mrs. Stubbart was hired for what was advertised as a temporary proof-reading position at The Examiner newspaper in Independence. She worked 40 hours a week until a few days before her 105th birthday on June 9 of this year. At that time, she was admitted to a local hospital to recover from minor injuries sustained in a fall at her home. She officially retired Aug. 20, 2000, and moved from her home on 23rd Street to The Rosewood building at The Groves care facility in Independence on Aug. 30. It was the first time she had moved since coming to Independence in 1944.

In 1992, she was named the Missouri Older Worker of the Year. She also received recognition from both Gov. John Ashcroft and Gov. Mel Carnahan for her unending work ethic. The Missouri Senate honored her several times with proclamations and she also received recognition from the GovernorÕs Advisory Council on Aging for being such a positive role model.

When she turned 100 in 1995, Graceland College in Lamoni, Iowa, made Mrs. Stubbart an honorary alumna in recognition of her support of and work with students there. Prior to that, she was chosen to pose as the model for a statue of a pioneer women commissioned in the early 1990s by the National Frontier Trails Center in Independence. She felt particularly honored in 1998, when the Independence School district dedicated the Bingham Seventh Grade library after her.

She was also preceded in death by two brothers, Darrell and Rex Morford, five grandchildren, Jerry DeBarthe in 1997, Joy DeBarthe in 1950, Gary Lee Stubbart and Genie Stubbart, both in 1945, and Chris Stubbart in 1967.

Her survivors include five children, Enid DeBarthe and husband, Joe, Lamoni, Iowa, Veryl Stubbart and wife Lena, Alva, Wyo., Donald Stubbart and wife, Mary, Moline, Ill., Carol Kroeck, Independence, and Kenneth Stubbart and wife, Wanda, Columbus, Ohio; a brother and sister-in-law, Kenneth A. and Opal Morford, Simi Valley, Calif.; 14 grandchildren, David DeBarthe, Paul DeBarthe, James Stubbart, John Stubbart, Mary Yocum, Martha Butts, Pam Guldenzoph, Judy Murphy, Carol Hicks, Hope Skinner, Bunni Stubbart, Dale Stubbart, Robin Stubbart and Laura Irwin; 30 great-grandchildren, Steve DeBarthe, Phillip DeBarthe, Linda DeBarthe, Michelle Sadler, Marla Severn, Hanino Montoya, Heiata Chapman, Haumana DeBarthe, Tehani Walton, Tehau DeBarthe, Shaun Yocum, Elizabeth Yocum, Charles Butts, Gene Butts, Colleen Irwin, Jay Irwin, Deanna Burghart, Debbie Spillman, Amy Weidenaar, Brian Swearingin, Doug Swearingin, Jesse Skinner, David Skinner, Tammy Skinner, Randy Murphy, Scott Murphy, Tim Murphy, Joyce Schraeder, Jon Butts and Justin Butts; 17 great-great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Services will be 11 a.m. Saturday at the Speaks Suburban Chapel. Burial will be in Mound Grove Cemetery. Friends may call from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and the body may be viewed from noon to 6 p.m. Friday, all at the chapel. The family suggests contributions to the Audrey F. Stubbart Scholarship Fund, in care of the Independence School District Foundation, 1231 S. Windsor, Independence, Mo. 64055.

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