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Elisa Dawson

June 1, 2021

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Elisa Dawson died peacefully and entered Heaven in the early hours of June 1, 2021.  

Born June 10, 1924, to Juan T. and Virginia Baldonado she was the fourth of six daughters in a family of eleven children.  A lifelong resident of New Mexico, her early years were spent in the small southern town of Tularosa where she attended high school and met and married her husband, Ray Dawson, in 1942. She became the mother of six children and moved from Tularosa to Las Cruces and Albuquerque over the course of her fifty-five-year marriage to Ray, who preceded her in death in 1997. 

Elisa was known for her strong Catholic faith and she was active in all the parishes to which she belonged, most particularly Our Lady of the Assumption in Albuquerque where she sang in the Spanish choir. Elisa had a lovely voice and some of her happiest times were spent singing in harmony with her sisters, Elena (Nena) Duran, Teresita (Tere) Hutchings and Mary Sarbo. Nena and Tere are now the sole remaining children of Juan and Virginia Baldonado.  Elisa suffered the tragic loss of two adult children, Tom and Martha, in 1987 and 2007. Still she kept an unwavering faith and remained committed to her family. Beloved “Nana” to all her kids and grandchildren, she was always a wise counselor, healer of barked shins and wounded spirits. And in her prime a wonderful master of New Mexico style cooking. Quiet and unassuming she never sought the spotlight and was a model of humility and genuine care for those less fortunate. “When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when we’re feeling sad,” the first person the family turned to was Nana who was happy to add intentions to her extensive prayer list. She will be terribly missed. 

She is survived by her children, Albert, Margaret Gore, Mary Kelly, and Patrick; grandchildren, Sean Dawson, Neil Dawson, Erin Dawson, David Gore, Todd Gore, Megan Smith, Jackson Kelly, Nikki Kelly, Ali Moore, Riley Swanson, and Anna Dawson; and great-grandchildren, Conor Dawson, Kaya Dawson, Maya Moore, Malcolm Sillas, Stella Smith, Gemma Smith, Max Gore and Vaughn Gore. 

In lieu of flowers please make donations to Covenant House, 50 10th Ave, New York, NY 10018.



To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Elisa Dawson, please visit our floral store.


June 10, 2021

6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
FRENCH - Lomas
10500 Lomas Blvd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87112

June 11, 2021

10:00 AM
Holy Child
19 Camino del Santo Niño
Tijeras, NM 87059

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