Nancy E. Richardson

Nancy E. (Turner) Richardson passed away April 19, 2013, after losing a third battle with cancer that she fought with great courage.

Nancy spent her childhood in Texas, the daughter of Drexyle H. and Margaret (Reamer) Turner.  She was born on June 18, 1936 in Ft. Worth, rode her first horse in Midland, and delivered the commencement address for her senior class at St. Stephen’s Episcopal High School in Austin.

She graduated with a B.A. in English from Wellesley College in Massachusetts, spending four memorable and happy years there, fashioning lifelong friendships, and she earned an M.A. in English from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

Nancy married Gaylord E. Richardson in St. Louis on June 24, 1961, and accompanied her husband when he moved to New York City in 1964 to work as an architect.  She enjoyed the big city and found its cultural offerings a great stimulus. She and Gaylord briefly returned to St. Louis in 1973 before establishing their home in Lawrence in 1975, upon Gaylord’s taking a position as Assistant Professor with the University of Kansas School of Architecture and Urban Design.

Nancy pursued a variety of careers when not busy raising her two children.  She taught English at Cleveland High School in St Louis and Lindenwood College in St. Charles, Missouri, served as Director of Adult Education for the Girl Scouts of St. Louis, worked as a nurses’ aide at Presbyterian Manor in Lawrence, and retired in 2010 as a library assistant at the Hatch Resource Center of the Kansas University School of Architecture, Design and Planning.  She was responsible for managing the Hatch collection of books, periodicals, and other reference materials at the Center.  She genuinely loved working in the Hatch Resource Center and was known as a kind and resourceful manager, sharing her enthusiasm for the information available with both students and faculty.

Nancy loved books!  She was a voracious reader.  She loved learning, travel, family holidays, animals, collecting pitchers, a good mystery novel, listening to BBC and public radio, and an occasional glass of port. She enjoyed humor and an evening with friends, particularly, one providing the occasion for a well-told story.  She was engaging, making friends easily, endlessly curious, deeply compassionate, and a kind and loving mother and grandmother. She will be profoundly and painfully missed.

Nancy’s bouts with cancer led her to participate in many support activities.  She attended Bosom Buddies, participated in Relay for Life, and the Lawrence Memorial Hospital Cancer Support Group.  She volunteered for the Lawrence Public Library, supported the Lawrence Humane Society, participated in the KU Endowment’s Endacott Society, and was a member of the Older Women’s League, or OWLs, serving on their Board until her illness prevented her from continuing.

She is survived by her husband, Gaylord, her daughter, Paula E.E. Richardson of Davenport, Iowa, her son, Aaron J. B. Richardson and daughter-in-law, Debra Kaufman, of Berkeley, California, and her two grandchildren, Laurel Richardson and Evan Richardson. She is also survived by her brother, Drexel Turner of Ft. Myers, Florida, and his family.

The family would like to express their gratitude to the nursing staff of the Transitional and Palliative Care Unit of Lawrence Memorial Hospital for their abundant kindness and sustaining attention during her last month of life.

A memorial service will be held at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, 2013, at Warren-McElwain Mortuary. Private interment will be at Oak Hill Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made in her name to the Lawrence Memorial Hospital Employee Care Fund, LMH Employee Education Fund, and the Lawrence Humane Society, and may be sent in care of the mortuary.

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