OBITUARY

Lois Evans Stephens

October 4, 1918February 8, 2013

Lois Evans Stephens, 94, a loving wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother passed away peacefully on Friday, February 8, 2013 in Camarillo after a five week battle with pneumonia.

Lois was born in Casper, Wyoming on October 4, 1918, to George Pattillo and wife Lois. She graduated from Natrona County High School in Casper in 1935. Lois attended the University of Wyoming, Iowa State College, Brenau College, and Colorado State University earning a BS degree in Home Economics. She taught Home Economics and English to middle and high school students in Monument, Colorado; Midwest, Wyoming; and San Diego, California before joining Oxnard School District in 1950. In Oxnard, Lois first served as an elementary school teacher, then she became the first female principal in the district, and she was Director of Instructional Services when she retired in 1982. While working in Oxnard Lois earned her Master of Arts and Doctorate degrees in Education at UCLA. During her later years in Oxnard, and after retirement, she taught part time at California Lutheran University. Lois was named Outstanding Woman of the Community by Oxnard Business and Professional Women's Club in 1969.

In March 1941, Lois married Jack Stephens (deceased 1993). They had two children, George and Susan. They moved from San Diego to Oxnard in 1948, and to Camarillo in 1966, where she resided until her death.

Lois was active in the Navy League, Oxnard Dance Club, Friends of the Bard Mansion, American Association of University Women, Somis Thursday Club, Assistance League of Ventura County, and Red Cross. After retirement, and well into her 80’s, Lois would volunteer almost every day in her daughter’s classroom at Rio Lindo School where Susan taught kindergarten and first grade. Because of Lois’ involvement in her community, she earned an honorary title of Camarillo Dona on September 17, 2000. For many years, Lois would faithfully attend Friday breakfasts at a Camarillo restaurant with other retired administrators.

While in college Lois began what was to become a lifetime passion for photography and compiling scrapbooks for travel and other significant events in her life such as college life and genealogy. In the end, her collection of scrapbooks would measure fourteen feet high if piled atop one another.

In the 1970’s Lois and Jack began traveling around the world. They traveled to Asia, Europe, Australia, South America, and many places in North America. After each trip, Lois's scrapbook described the sights, experiences, and the many friends they made as they traveled.

After retirement Lois and Jack bought a motorhome and on March 22, 1982 left on a trip around the country. They returned on August 2, with many notes and photographs. In addition to the expected scrapbook creation, she also wrote a draft book describing their adventure, but never got it published. After Jack passed away, Lois continued to travel around the world with her friends and children, traveling to Mexico, Canada, Hawaii, the Panama Canal, the Mediterranean, and Scandinavia. When Lois wasn’t cruising and organizing material for another scrapbook, she enjoyed playing bridge with her friends, spending quiet time at home reading, mastering crossword puzzles, and watching all of the birds and squirrels that frequented her well-manicured backyard.

Early in her career at Oxnard School District, Lois began collecting owl statues. They came to epitomize the love for learning that characterized her throughout life. She had the following poem on her office wall in many of her work assignments:

A wise old owl sat on an oak. The more he saw, the less he spoke. The less he spoke, the more he heard. Why aren’t we like that wise old bird?

While in pursuit of her advanced degrees her voracious appetite for reading was focused on her studies, often reading three or four books a week. Once she had the time to devote to reading for pleasure again, she began to collect a library of books on a wide range of subjects. Lois attended a writing club and began to write vignettes of her early life centered around photographs from her childhood. She loved to discuss the books she read and loaned the books she particularly enjoyed to her friends and family.

In addition to her two children, George Stephens (wife Judy) of Columbia, MD and Susan Johansson (husband Eric) of Camarillo, CA. Lois leaves behind four grandchildren, Deborah Brozyna (husband Charles) of Columbia, MD, Daniel Stephens of Columbia, MD, Karin Haggmark (husband Joshua) of Ventura, CA and Sarah Cameron (husband Matthew) of Atascadero, CA. Lois was blessed with seven great-grandchildren, Cindy and Victoria Brozyna of Columbia, MD, Caleb and Ariana Stephens of Columbia, MD, Annika, Ryker and Kai Haggmark of Ventura, CA.

Memorial services will be held on Saturday, February 16, 2013, 2:00 P.M., at the Camarillo United Methodist Church located at 291 Anacapa Dr., 805-482-4312. A private interment ceremony will be held at Conejo Mountain Memorial Park, Camarillo, CA.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be made in her name to the Camarillo United Methodist Church or to the American Cancer Society.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Ted Mayr Funeral Home, 3150 Loma Vista Rd., Ventura.

Services

  • Memorial Service Saturday, February 16, 2013
REMEMBERING

Lois Evans Stephens

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Julie Jacobson

March 24, 2013

Lois was my mother's favorite cousin. She transferred her attention to me after my mother's death in 1998. I will miss Lois's charming and informative annual letter. My sincere condolence to her family. Julie T. Jacobson (daughter of Louise Stoune McClanahan Taylor and granddaughter of Julia Downing McClanahan)

Lennie Vann

February 19, 2013

My condolences to Lois's family. I had to be at my close friend, Norine Sullivans service. God speed for the family. Lennie Vann

Dama Hanks

February 16, 2013

My dear Susan, today I learned that my dear and long-time friend passed on, and my heart is with you. I'm grateful for the many years I worked with Lois in Navy League. She had a beauty of character and personality that endeared her to all who knew her. Nothing can take from you the wealth of memories and the happiness that you and your mother shared. We have lived in Florida for nine years, and I always missed my friends there.

February 16, 2013

Lois was an amazing and gracious woman. Through her work in education and extensive volunteerism she touched many lives. We hope that the entire Johansson family is blessed by the many memories and good times shared with Lois.
Dick & Sharon Bellman

john spooner

February 16, 2013

I'm sure she was a truely amazing woman who had a very remarkable life.

Karin Haggmark

February 16, 2013

My grandmother was extraordinary! From her love of learning and always challenging herself to her adventurous spirit, she always had a quiet dignity about herself. So many things stand out to me as "quintessential" grandma...her Sunday brunches when she and Jack would invite dozens of people, her love of owls, her stacks of books always within reach, her PI R2 license plate on her classic Mustang; I could go on and on! She was amazing!

Carol & Ray Bytheway

February 15, 2013

We are so saddened by the passing of Lois. She was a wonderful friend and next door neighbor of ours for forty five years. We will remember her always,and feel blessed to have had her in our lives. God Bless her family.

Cathy Brudnicki

February 15, 2013

Lois preceded me as chair of the Ventura County Chapter of the American Red Cross. She mentored me and was always available when I needed her. I will miss her travelogues. May she rest in peace.

Bruce G. Thompson

February 14, 2013

May God bless your family. In the fifties i was privileged to have had Mrs. Stephens as a teacher ..what a great teacher and wonderful inspiration she was in my young life. I never forgot her.

February 14, 2013

We are saddened by the passing of Lois. We have always admired her. You have our prayers.
Pat & Bruce Perrine