Deaths and funerals (12/10/2011)


Shirley Artiaga Angowski
Shirley Artiaga Angowski, age 51, a resident of Los Lunas, went to join her beloved sister and brothers on Monday, Dec. 5.
She was preceded in death by her father, Herman Artiaga; stepfather, Frank Vasquez; brothers, Larry Artiaga and Louie Artiaga; and sister Judy Garley.
Shirley is survived by her son, Frank Angowski; her loving mother Nora Artiaga Vasquez; sisters, Wilma Abril, Loretta Garcia and her husband, Joe and Marcella Lambert and her husband, Rick. She is also survived by many loving nieces and nephews.
Services were held Friday, Dec. 9.
Arrangements were handled by the caring professionals at the Noblin Funeral Service Los Lunas Chapel, 2211-D Main St., where a guest register is available at

Arline Margaret Farris
Arline Margaret Farris, age 89, a life long resident of Belen, passed away on Sunday, Dec. 4.
She was born in Belen into a longtime railroad family. Her mother, Lillian, was a Harvey Girl and her father, John George, was a switchman with the Santa Fe Railroad. Her husband and son carried on the family tradition and worked for the Santa Fe Railroad.
She loved collecting roosters and sharing time with fellow cat collector and lifelong friend, Helen Auge.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Richard Farris; brother, Carl George; and sister, Mary Ellen “Pinky” Payne. Arline is survived by her loving son, Robert Farris and his wife, Lynn; two grandchildren; two great-grandchildren; and two nephews.
Cremation has taken place. No services are scheduled at this time. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation in Arline Farris’s name to the Arthritis Foundation, 5801 Osuna Road NE, Albuquerque, N.M., 87109-2587 or 883-0343.
Sign Arline’s online register book at Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Gilbert Torres Leyba
Gilbert Torres Leyba bid the world farewell just as the sun also began to say its own goodbye to the day, with both blazing brilliantly into eternal memory on Monday, Nov. 14.
At the time of his passing, Mr. Leyba had spent 78 years sharing his life and its lessons to those around him; the fact of his death therefore must take second stage to a life lived for family, for country and for the betterment of those who were inspired and made better by his example.
Mr. Leyba was a lifelong resident of New Mexico, born May 12, 1933, to Jose Emiterio and Florencia Torres Leyba of Old Town Albuquerque.
He was one of eight children who survived into adulthood, and he is missed deeply by one brother and four sisters, who survive him and who brought joy to his earliest years.
After graduating from Albuquerque High School in 1951, Mr. Leyba sought employment in many different industries, including work for a brief time with New Mexico’s legendary Unser Racing family.
Also during this period, Mr. Leyba proudly served his country in the Army during the Korean Conflict. In the spring of 1952, Sandia National Laboratories secured his services, and for nearly five decades thereafter the world was made a safer place due to the dedication to task, the numerous skills and the remarkable intelligence he brought to that endeavor.
Over a career that spanned more than 46 years, Gilbert — or “Guilty” as he was affectionately known by his friends — proudly mentored and otherwise fostered the careers of countless men and women as they began their work for Sandia. At his retirement, celebrated on his 65th birthday, Mr. Leyba was celebrated by Sandia for his peerless devotion to “Exemplary Service in the National Interest.”
Along with his brilliant career, Gilbert was blessed in his later years to be joined with soul mates and caregivers whose love for him was and remains never ending. Married on Valentine’s Day, Gilbert and Kay Leyba lived for and loved one another in a beautiful romance that would endure for 38 years.
He lived to know great love, and to see his son grow into a man who lived in awe and respect of the impact his father made in the lives of others, and who strives to carry that work forward in his own life.
In respecting his wish that as little pain as possible be inflicted on those who would mourn his passing, cremation has already occurred and no services will be held.
Special thanks are given by the family for the excellent care provided by Central New Mexico Kidney Center, its staff and the friends made there during Mr. Leyba’s final months.
In lieu of flowers, it is asked that those who knew and appreciated the life of Gilbert T. Leyba honor his memory by making a positive difference in the life of another, whether stranger, family or friend. Although a life may pass away, its purpose can live forever by the good done in love for this beautiful world.
Phyllis J. Neal
Phyllis J. Neal, a resident of Bosque Farms, passed away on Monday, Nov. 28.
Phyllis was born to John Richard and Pauline Feaselman on Sept. 21, 1944, in Huntington, Ind. Her family moved to Deming when she was about 8 years old. She graduated from Deming High School in 1964.
Phyllis worked as a bookkeeper in Omaha, Neb., El Paso and then Albuquerque. She lived her life as a sincere Christian and was always active in her church, in Woman’s Aglow and in Bible study groups.
She worked in the children’s ministry, which was one of the joys of her life. She had a beautiful voice and always loved singing in choirs.
Phyllis is survived by her daughter, Tricia Poindexter (husband, Troy; grandsons Tyler and Justin; granddaughter, Courtney) of Millington, Tenn.; her son, Ryan Neal (wife, Karen) of Colorado Springs, Colo.; and three brothers, Howard (and Adrianne) of Las Cruces, Richard (and Flavia) of Deming, and Jerry (and Linda) of Loveland, Colo.
A celebration service will be held at Grace Fellowship in Los Lunas at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 13. Pastor Clifford Chavez will be officiating.

Bertha Faye Shiplet
After 75 years of loving and caring for her family, Bertha Faye Shiplet peacefully ascended surrounded by her family on Thursday, Dec. 8.
She was born in Mountainair on Rattlesnake Hill on July 23, 1936.
She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Raymond Shiplet; her parents, Bud and Beulah Garner; her sisters, Mildred Matthew and Wanda Riley; brother, Boyd Garner; and daughter-in-law Sandra Shiplet.
Bertha Faye was a loving mother to Carolyn and Ricky Baca, Michael and Lorraine Shiplet, Jay and Carmen Shiplet, Dwain Shiplet, Richard Shiplet, Jack Shiplet and his companion, Tonya Herrera, and Gene Shiplet. She was a proud grandmother of 11 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren.
She made the world a better place for them and those that came into her life. She taught us to be kind, honest and hold strong to our core values. Although she is gone, her love, strength and laughter will live on through those who survive her.
A visitation will be held at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, Dec. 10, and a funeral service will be held at 11 a.m., at Romero Funeral Home in Belen. Interment will immediately follow at Terrace Grove Cemetery.
The family would like to extend a special thank you to Presbyterian Hospice Care, which much appreciation to Pam Mares and Denise Chavez, and family friend, Lupe Rodriguez.

Frances “Frankie” W. Styles
Frances “Frankie” W. Styles, born in Rochester, N.Y., went “home” on Wednesday, Dec. 7.
She was preceded in death by her sisters, Mary Lafler and Dorothy Button; husband, Thomas Styles; and her two closest friends, Lois Winker and Allyn Lee.
Frances is survived by her daughters and their husbands, Karen Lee and Robert Mundy, and Susan Alys and Todd DeStefani; her grandson, Matthew Allyn Green; granddaughters, Ember Nicole DeStefani and Mikaela DeStefani; son, Alvin Lee; niece, Lynn Lafler; and nephews, Lloyd Button Jr. and Raymond and Mark Lafler.
A funeral service will be held at St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church in Los Lunas at 2 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 10.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Floor 17 Chicago, Ill., 60601-7633, (, or to the St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church Building Fund, PO Box 2489, Los Lunas, N.M.,  87031.
The family wishes to say a huge thank you to the Ambercare Hospice and Home Health Care teams and to the loving support of our St. Matthew’s family.
Sign Frances’s online register book at Romero Funeral Home, 609 N. Main St., Belen.

Marie Therese Work
Died 2011
Marie Therese Work, age 64, went into the hands of Our Lord on Wednesday, Dec. 7, from complications of ovarian cancer, with her husband at her side.
She made profound impacts on the community and the people she met. She graduated from the University of New Mexico with the highest honors. For many years, she worked to feed the poor and was dedicated to the church.
Marie is survived by her beloved husband of 38 1/2 years, and caregiver, Frederick J. Work; her six children, Daniel James, Nathan Peter, Aaron John Mark, Aubrey Ann Marie, Mary Catherine and Peter Samuel; and their spouses, Kerri, Robert, David and Sarah. She is also survived by her nine grandchildren, Thea, Ethan, Elsie, Liam, Veronica, Angie, Vincent, Elliott and James.
Marie was a wonderful daughter, wife and mother, who kept the Lord close to her heart. She will be sorely missed.
All services will be held at San Clemente Catholic Church beginning with visitation at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 14, followed by a vigil service at 7:30 p.m. Final visitation will be held at 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Dec. 15, and a Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10 a.m.
Arrangements entrusted to Riverside Funeral Home of Los Lunas, 820 Main St. NE. Please visit Marie’s online guest register at