Elsie Martha Krey Matthews passed into eternal life on July 25th, 2012, under the loving care of the Cottonbloom Asst. Living facility and Amber Care Hospice. Elsie was born December 20, 1930, in Massena, New York. She was preceded in death by her parents, Norman and Katherine Krey and her husband, Richard I. Matthews, also of Massena.
Elsie spent much of her childhood in Massena, NY. She moved to Spokane, WA with her parents while in high school. There she married her loving husband, Richard, in August of 1954. Richard was in the United States Air Force until his retirement in Alamogordo, NM in 1975. Together they moved throughout the United States and England. Elsie loved touring Europe while they were stationed there, and in her later years, Elsie shared this love of travel by taking cruises with family to countless ports throughout the Caribbean, Alaska, and Europe.
Elsie is survived by son Charles Lee Matthews of Bullhead City, AZ; daughters Katherine I. Disher and husband Robert of Dallas, Oregon; Norma L. Kelley and husband Todd of Las Cruces, NM; and Martha A. Benavidez and husband Steve also of Las Cruces. She also is survived by her grandchildren Thomas Disher and wife Annie, Timothy Disher, Amy and Brian Kelley, and Richard and Alex Benavidez.
Elsie had one cousin, Tom Carter, to whom she was very close even though they lived in different parts of the country. He preceded her in death. His wife, Rose, daughters Jenny and Melanie, and their families held a special place in her heart. They were among the many family members and friends who loved to gather at the Krey/Matthews cabin on Idahos Hayden Lake.
Elsie was a graduate of the University of Idaho where she was a member of the Alpha Phi Sorority. After graduating she worked for the Inland Empire Girl Scout Council.
While her children were young, Elsie was very active in the PTA and Girl Scouts of America, and while her husband served in Rotary International, Elsie participated in Rotary activities throughout the southwest and the world. She was a Paul Harris Fellow in Rotary. She was also a member of PEO Chapter 40 in Alamogordo and an avid Bridge player and a member of the American Contract Bridge League and held various positions in both her local and district clubs. She traveled to many bridge tournaments and played actively at the senior citizen center in Alamogordo. Elsie enjoyed the many friends she met while playing bridge.
A viewing will be Sunday, July 29, 2012 from 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. at Hamilton-ODell Funeral Home and the memorial service will be at 10:00 a.m., Monday, July 30, 2012 at Grace United Methodist Church with Reverend Victor Colton officiating. Hawaiian-themed attire is encouraged at both services in honor of Elsies lifelong enthusiasm for travel and adventure.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be sent to the Elsie Krey Matthews Memorial Library fund of Cottonbloom Assisted Living (5525 Cotton Bloom Court, Las Cruces, NM 88007).
The family has entrusted their loved one to the care of Hamilton-ODell Funeral Home to direct the services.
To sign the online register book, please visit www.hamiltonodell.com