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1924 Thelma 2023

Thelma Marie Elder

July 21, 1924 — October 31, 2023

Thelma Marie Elder (nee Urban), our Mother, peacefully passed away of natural causes during the cool and quiet morning of October 31, 2023. She lived a long and fulfilling 99 years of life, 36 of which were spent living here in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque.

She was born on July 21,1924 in the small German community of Pfeifer, Kansas to George L. and Margaret (nee Schuvie) Urban. She was the 2nd of 5 children, including her older brother Gilbert, younger sister Elma and younger brothers Verlin and Robert, all of whom preceded her in death. Her husband of 54 years, Robert Paul Elder, preceded her in 2007.

She had a love of sports. College football and basketball, the Los Angeles Lakers and her beloved Kansas City Chiefs. Her spunky and competitive spirit ultimately led her to the sport of golf, which she so enjoyed playing. Some of her favorite courses were here in New Mexico, Kansas, California and Hawaii. Her favorite memory was playing golf at Spanish Bay in Pebble Beach courtesy of her Granddaughter. While there, she had her first taste of Jagermeister leaving the much younger guests having a hard time keeping up with her at the bar. She had a sense of adventure that was undeniable.

Her Kansas roots led her to Nebraska, Massachusetts, California and New Mexico, making a home for her family, no matter where they lived.

She is survived by her daughter Deborah and her husband Wade, her son Donald and his wife Lynn, 3 grandchildren, 3 great grandchildren and 1 great-great granddaughter. She will be missed as the strong matriarch of our family. She will always be known as a force to be reckoned with.

She will be cremated and inurned next to her husband, Paul, at the National Cemetery in Santa Fe.

To send flowers to the family in memory of Thelma Marie Elder, please visit our flower store.


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