Cover photo for Helen Langdon's Obituary
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1933 Helen 2023

Helen Langdon

February 3, 1933 — November 1, 2023

Helen Jean U. Langdon was born in Albuquerque February 3, 1933, to John F. and Anita T. Ulivarri and passed in her sleep bn November 1, 2023. She graduated from St. Mary's high school in 1950 and went on to graduate in Occupational Therapy (OT) from the Colorado State University in Fort Collins Colorado in 1954. She is survived by her husband Lawrence L. Langdon, her sons Stephen and Bryan, four grandchildren (Jennifer, Nicholes, Chloe and Claudina}, and one great grandchild (Elizebeth).

Jean was a registered with the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) and loved working as an Occupational Therapist. She was an innovator in many of her positions. Her first position was with the United Cerebral Palsy Center in Fort Worth Texas. In the late 1950s, she learned that a new facility was being set up in Albuquerque called the Rehabilitation Center, and she was hired to set up the OT department. Her specialty was therapy for severely disabled patients from hand therapy to activities of daily living and included patients with cerebral palsy and downs syndrome along with simple sprains and fractures. She employed many modes of treatment including pottery making, leather tooling, weaving on a loom, metalworking, and development of cooking skills for the severely handicapped. She even set up a weekly wheelchair square dance to provide some social skills for her patients. In the early 1960s, Jean set up a workshop for the Rehabilitation Center where patients were able to produce and sell several items such as prize ribbons and similar items. In 1964 her son Stephen was born.

About 1966, Larry was working at ACF Industries as an engineer when the plant closed, and the facility was taken over by General Electric (GE}. He then accepted a civil service position at Carona Ca. and Jean and Larry had to move, Jean temporarily le:ft the Rehabilitation Center to move to California. There she was an Occupational Therapist for several senior medical facilities, and she had her second son, Bryan.

In 1971, Larry was able to obtain a civil service engineering position with the Navy at Kirtland; and he and Jean returned to Albuquerque. Jean was able to continue working at the Rehabilitation Center and enjoyed the work immensely. She had several volunteers who assisted her therapy programs. In 1976, one of her volunteers, Jane Blumenfeld, who was an Area Coordinator for Special Education for Albuquerque Public Schools (APS}, asked Jean for assistance in setting up a program to introduce OT into APS to comply with requirements of the No Child Left Behind Law which needed to be implemented. Jean developed a program proposal, which was approved. In 1976, one OT was designated for the APS north area office; and Jean was hired to implement the program. This was a challenge because integration of OT to specifically address educational needs of handicapped children had never been addressed in school systems and there was no published guidance on how to do it. To address this need, Jean and Larry wrote a book which was published in 1983. Over the years the number of OTs in APS has grown dramatically. Jean's contributions to OT program integration at APS were many. Initially, she procured necessary equipment and assisted in hiring the first OTs to start up the program. She conducted numerous seminars to provide teachers and administrative staff information on how OTs could aid teaching staff to integrate severely handicapped students into the classroom environment. She conducted many seminars on the use and application of Sensory Integration techniques and was highly respected for her expertise and ability to analyze a child's needs and develop a therapy program specifically adapted to meet those needs.

Throughout their marriage of 62 years, Jean and Larry showed a love and compassion for each other that is rarely matched. Jean will be missed not only by her family, but by the extended family of people whose lives have been touched by this wonderful and gracious woman. May she rest in peace.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Helen Langdon, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service

Friday, November 17, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 pm (Mountain time)

Wyoming & San Antonio Funeral Home

7121 Wyoming Blvd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87109

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