5/29 Obituaries

Gus Byars, 90
Services: 2 p.m. Tuesday at Wheeler Mortuary Chapel in Portales.
Gus Byars, 90, of Portales, died Thursday, May 26, 2005, at Heartland Continuing Care Center in Portales.
He was born on Nov. 20, 1914, in Tucumcari, to Mary and Augustus “Gus” Byars.
He grew up in Tucumcari and Fort Sumner. He married Thelma Potter on Oct. 15, 1932, in Santa Rosa. They made their home in Fort Sumner and later in Tucumcari. There he was employed by the City Water Department where he eventually became superintendent. In 1952 they moved to Albuquerque where he worked for Allison and Haney Construction. In 1967 they moved to Vermont where he worked in a jet engine factory for General Electric. He retired in 1979, and returned to New Mexico in 1985. He was a member of the Church of Christ, and the Third and Kilgore congregation. Family members said he enjoyed fishing and working in his yard.
He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Sidney Byars; three sisters, Viola Ramsey, Ann Coburn and Lou Ellen Babers; a step-great-grandson, Chris Rojas; an infant son; and by his wife.
Survivors include a daughter, Shirley Ford-Wormington of Portales; two grandchildren, Gary Don Ford (and wife, Cita) of Henrietta, Texas, and Sherry Lynn Trudo (Kevin) of Portales; three great-grandchildren, Gary Don Ford Jr. (Coresa) of Portales, Amanda Don Murray (Josh) of Casper, Wyo., and Troy Trudo of Portales; and a step-great-grandson, Michael Lawrence of Henrietta, Texas; four great-grandchildren, Riley Don and Chase David Ford, and Megan and Ashley Murray; and a sister, Margaret West of Slaton, Texas.
David Bennett will officiate the services.
Burial will be at Fort Sumner Cemetery.
Pallbearers are Terry Potter, Travis Coburn, James West, Scott Babers, Bob Harmon and Brian Coburn.
Arrangements are by Wheeler Mortuary of Portales.

Bert Connelly, 79
Services: 10 a.m. Monday at Terpening and Son Chapel in Artesia.
Bert E. Connelly, 79, of Artesia, died Friday, May 27, 2005, at his home.
He was born on July 28, 1925, in Atoka, Okla., to Herbert and Edna Usher Connelly.
He married Joyce Byrum. He came to Artesia in March of 2005, from Bent. He was a former resident of Lovington and Cloudcroft. He was a retired production foreman for Hanson Petroleum. He was a member of Jackson Avenue Baptist Church in Lovington, a 32nd Degree Mason of the Lovington Masonic Lodge No. 46 where he had served as Worshipful Master, and DeMolay Dad. He served his country in World War II as a supervisor at Bremerton Washington State Shipyard, and was an avid outdoorsman and sportsman.
He was preceded in death by his parents; three brothers, George, Ted, and David Connelly; and five sisters, Helen Robertson, Mayola Taylor, Ida Richardson, Thelma Davis, and Dale Van Horn.
Survivors include his wife; four sons, Steven Connelly (and wife, Linda) of Portales, Darrell Connelly (Cymantha) of Littleton, Colo., Kenneth Connelly (Ruth) of Katy, Texas, and Richard Connelly (DeAnne) of Artesia; a daughter, Cheryl Clarkson (Michael) of Aurora, Colo.; a brother, Bill Connelly of Grove Port, Ohio; 14 grandchildren; and six great-grandsons.
Cremation has taken place.
Arrangements are by Terpening & Son Mortuary of Artesia.

Ara Taylor, 96
Services: 10 a.m. Tuesday at Portales Cemetery.
Mrs. Ara May Taylor, 96, of Portales, died Friday, May 27, 2005, at Laurel Plains Nursing Center in Clovis.
She was born on Feb. 16, 1909, in Spiro, Indian Territory, Okla., to Mandy and James C. Coggin.
She was 13 when the family was left orphaned. She and her twin sister had to go to work to support the family and raise the younger children. She married Claude Taylor on Feb. 2, 1936. They farmed in Texas until 1945 when they moved to the Bethel community. Later they moved to Portales and opened the Taylor Grocery. She attended the First Baptist Church where she was a member of the Golden Circle Sunday school class. Family members said she was a great cook, enjoyed gardening, sewing, traveling, and loved making people laugh.
She was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, Jim and D.W. Coggin; three sisters, Easter Price, Billie McIlvain, and her twin sister, Era Fay McLendon; a grandson, Kenneth Taylor; two sons, Jerry and Ralph Taylor; and by her husband.
Survivors include a daughter, Dee Wesson of Portales; a daughter-in-law, Margaret Taylor of Moore, Texas; nine grandchildren, Stuart Wesson of Portales, Paul Wesson (and wife, Candace) of Austin, Texas, Trent Wesson (Rhonda) of Albuquerque, Megan Alderman (Matt) of Fort Collins, Colo., Sian Taylor of Abbotsford, B.C., Canada, Morgan Taylor (Brenda) of San Diego, Calif., Bryn Taylor of Moore, Texas, Cherry Burns (Robert) of Woodward, Okla., and Debbie Jackson (John) of Woodward, Okla.; 10 great-grandchildren; and a great-great-grandchild.
Burial will be at Portales Cemetery.
Rev. Ted Bailey will officiate the services.
Honorary pallbearers are all of her grandchildren.
Arrangements are by Wheeler Mortuary of Portales.