Helen Leslie Woodward Bloxham
DOWNEY —Helen Leslie Woodward Bloxham, of Downey, Idaho, passed away on Saturday, November 6, 2010, at the Downey Care Center, where she had resided for the past two years. She was 94 years old.
Leslie was born on June 7, 1916, in Shelley, Idaho, to Alonzo R. Woodward and Alta Mary Stanley Woodward. Leslie came from a hard-working family who shared chores on their farm near Moreland, Idaho. She went to school in Moreland and was a very bright child who loved to read. Her love of reading was developed at the knees of her parents, mainly her father. Leslie also loved memorizing and reciting pieces of literature and considered this a lost art in her older years.
She continued on to college at the University of Idaho Southern Branch in Pocatello, receiving her teaching certificate in two years. She taught in Downey from 1935 to 1940, at which time she went back to school to get a B.A. degree at the Colorado State College of Education in Greeley, Colorado. She graduated in the spring of 1941, and taught in the Denver area for one year.
Leslie’s and Luke Bloxham’s paths crossed in 1936-37, when they were both teaching in Downey. After a long courtship and Leslie’s extended absence while going to school and teaching in Colorado, Luke proposed, and they were married on June 30, 1943.
Leslie and Luke bought a home in Downey and lived there for 65 years. They had three children, Jon, Sue, and Mark. She loved being a mother and a rancher’s wife. She was a wonderful cook and prepared many delicious meals for the farm hands, especially during hay season and branding. She liked to spend time on the farm, walking and enjoying the land.
Leslie was a dedicated and caring teacher, and had a profound effect on many children. She often stayed long after the bell rang to provide individual help to students who were struggling. She taught at Downey Elementary, all grades except for sixth, until she retired in 1977.
Leslie enjoyed singing and was a charter member of the Downey Madrigal Choir. She sang with them for over 50 years. She also sang in the Downey Ward Relief Society Sisters Choir. She was a member of the Downey Study Club and various area sewing clubs. Leslie liked being involved with the fair every summer. She considered civic duty important and was in the city council for several years. These activities helped her develop many cherished friendships that lasted throughout her life.
Leslie and Luke enjoyed traveling to visit their children and grandchildren, taking many trips in the western United States, including Alaska. They traveled to Turkey to visit Jon and his family while he was stationed there. Leslie took a trip to England with her brother, Ralph, and she and Luke spent a number of winters in Arizona with her sister, Lois.
She is survived by her children, Jon (Thine) Bloxham of Hayden, Idaho, Sue (DeLynn) Burke of Arimo, and Mark (Kerry) Bloxham of Downey; 12 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her husband Louis “Luke” and two grandsons, Bryan and Nick Burke.
Funeral services will be held on Saturday, November 13, 2010, at noon in the Downey LDS Chapel, with Bishop Rex Nielsen officiating. Friends may meet with the family on Friday, November 12 at the church from 6 to 7 p.m. and on Saturday prior to the services from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. Burial will follow in the Woodland Cemetery.
In memory of their love of young people and education, the family suggests donations to: The Luke and Leslie Bloxham Education Scholarship Fund, c/o Ireland Bank, P.O. Box 205, Downey, Idaho 83234.
Helen Leslie Woodward Bloxham