Mrs. Annie L. Tafoya (Gherardi) of Albuquerque, New Mexico, passed away on August 24, 2017, at the age of 96.
Annie was born in Des Moines, New Mexico on June 8, 1921 to her parents Giuseppe and Fiorenza Gherardi (Becchetti). Annie had an older brother James, and a younger sister Gina both now deceased.
Annie and her siblings spent their early years living in the vicinity of the Phelps Dodge coal mine in Dawson, NM, while their father worked as a miner and their mother kept the home, and provided room and board for other miners.
In the early 1930's Annie's family moved from Dawson to the south valley of Albuquerque, in Los Padillas, where her father had purchased land to begin farming. The entire family was involved in the farm enterprise from clearing and leveling the land to harvesting crops and caring for animals. Hard work was an everyday event, and it was the only after school activity.
Annie attended grammar school in Los Padillas and went on to attend Albuquerque High School where she met Henry R. Tafoya, Jr., and in 1939 they were married at the St. Augustine church in Isleta Pueblo.
The young marrieds moved to Santa Fe where Henry was a radio announcer at KVSF and they remained there for until 1941, when they moved to Las Vegas, New Mexico and Henry began announcing at KFUN.
After the outbreak of World War II, her husband enlisted in the US Navy and was shipped to San Diego for basic training. Annie remained behind in Albuquerque and in early 1942 gave birth to her first child Gloria, now deceased. Not long after, Annie moved to Alameda, California to be with Henry who was stationed at Alameda Naval Air Station, where they remained for the duration of the war.
In 1947 Henry joined the Air National Guard in Hayward and the family moved to Oakland where in 1952 their son Edward was born. They remained in Oakland until 1957 when they moved to Fresno due to a reassignment to the Fresno Air National Guard base.
Annie was employed at Sears & Roebucks for 23 years and retired in 1983.
In 1993 her husband passed away and Annie remained in Fresno until 1995 when she decided to return to Albuquerque to be nearer her brother, sister, and many relatives.
Annie made several trips to her father's home town in Italy during her life and was embraced by all of the cousins. She enjoyed the culture and meeting all of her cousins.
Annie leaves behind her son Edward and his wife Robyn, grandson Eddie, granddaughter Margaret, many, many Tafoya and Gherardi nieces and nephews, sisters-in-law, many friends from her neighborhood that watched after her and helper her with chores, as well as the wonderful ladies and staff at Bear Canyon Senior Center where Annie spent many enjoyable hours crocheting baby blankets for local charities.
Her last months were in the company of excellent caregivers provided by Home Care Assistance and the professionals at Alliance Home Health Care. Many thanks to those dedicated professionals.
A private cremation ceremony will be conducted and her ashes will be placed along side of her husband at the Santa Fe National Cemetery. The family is grateful for condolences, but declines flowers and donations.