Laverna Madeline (Hill) Sullenberger

Sullenberger Enlargephoto


Durango native Laverna Madeline (Hill) Sullenberger died Friday, Dec. 7, 2012, in Arvada. She was one month shy of her 91st birthday.

Mrs. Sullenberger was born to Walter and Lillian (Frizell) Hill on Jan. 8, 1922, at their ranch near Pastorius Reservoir on the Florida Mesa. She graduated from Durango High School in 1939.

On July 22, 1939, she married Robert Alexander Sullenberger in Tierra Amarilla, N.M. It was Mr. Sullenberger’s birthday.

Mr. and Mrs. Sullenberger were world travelers, both living abroad and visiting Egypt, India and most of Europe as they followed his career teaching nuclear engineering. In the early 1970s, while her husband taught at a university in Saudi Arabia, Mrs. Sullenberger worked as a secretary in a country where women were not supposed to work. It was too hot for her to wear a burqa, so the company shielded her desk with sheets.

Mrs. Sullenberger enjoyed teaching piano and organ lessons as well as playing her accordion, which was personalized with her name on it. She also enjoyed playing Scrabble and Rummikub.

Mrs. Sullenberger was preceded in death by her husband of 54 years, Robert Sullenberger, on Feb. 20, 1994.

She is survived by her sons, Wayne Sullenberger and David Sullenberger, both of Cedaredge; brother, Leland Hill of Durango; sister, Carol Jameson of Durango; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. to noon today, Dec. 13, 2012, at Olinger Crown Hill Mortuary, 777 W. 29th Ave., in Wheat Ridge. A graveside service and burial will be held at 2 p.m. at the Mount Olivet Cemetery, 12801 W. 44th Ave., also in Wheat Ridge.