|Birth: ||Sep. 27, 1911|
|Death: ||Mar. 27, 2009|
On Friday, Myrtle Anderson, aged 97 and long-time resident of Vona, CO, died at the Lincoln Community Nursing Home in Hugo, CO.
Born Myrtle Odessa Ashworth in Penhook, Franklin County, Virginia, the daughter of John Benjamin Ashworth & Pearl Belle Martin. She grew up in Danville, VA, the oldest of five children. As the oldest, she was a bit of a mother to her brothers and sisters, watching over them and making sure they stayed out of trouble. Most importantly, her broad smile and bright disposition made everyone feel safe and happy. She was also of great financial help to her parents first working in a textile mill and later becoming a journalist writing stories and commuting to Washington DC to cover the Second World War.
In 1953, in the local newspaper, Myrtle even covered her own wedding:On November 16, Myrtle Ashworth floored everyone she knew by marrying William A. Anderson from Colorado. She had only known him a short time, but it was love at first sight. Bill Anderson had been a bachelor for 54 years when he first met Myrtle at a friends house. Myrtle used to laugh saying that he was too embarrassed even to look her in the face. Instead, he would just hold his hat and look down with those hound-dog eyes of his. He met her a second and third time, and returned to Colorado, but he could not stay away. He came back and asked her to marry him. They knew it was impetuous, so they sat down and discussed every aspect of marriage they could think of. They agreed on everything except politics and religion. They decided that Bill could be a Republican if Myrtle could continue to vote Democrat, and each would worship however they wished. Problem solved, they married and moved to Colorado.
In Colorado, Bill Anderson was a hog farmer. He sold the farm, and they bought the general store in Vona, CO where they resided. In a small house on Howell Street, they passed many happy years. Myrtle made the best biscuits, corn bread, and strawberry pie around. I am not sure how she got the nickname "Mutt", but she embraced it; she even had a brown and white jug outside her Vona home with "Mutt Anderson" written on it. They had several little dogs including the cutest little ugly one you would have ever seen: Brownie. Once they retired from the store, they decided to see a bit of the world. They bought a grey Pontiac she renamed "ol greyhound" to drive around America in. Once, Bill told her to push that pedal down to see what it would do. She smiled and floored it for a couple of minutes down the highway. Bill was quiet and then said "that's all right honey; that's enough," then, they both laughed. Bill was struck with several heart attacks, and Myrtle made it her business to keep him well. She had to move away from the Southern-style breakfasts he loved, but she could make anything taste delicious, and he lived to be 84 giving them thirty wonderful years of marriage together.
After his death, Mutt kept her garden growing with crocuses and daffodils. She loved tulips and African violets as well. She walked at least one mile everyday. She continued to travel taking trips to visit her sisters on the East Coast and her husband's relatives in Wyoming. A frugal and stubborn woman, she liked doing things her own way, but she also loved completely, with a full heart, her friends, neighbors, relatives, and animals. She never forgot a holiday or to send a card.
At the age of 90, she had to move from her beloved house and garden to the nursing home in Hugo, CO. Having lost her mobility, she lost her independence as well. Nevertheless, she appreciated all the lovely people at the home who took such good care of her. Soon, her hearing and eyesight started to go. Moreover, she had outlived all her siblings and their spouses as well as her in-laws. She said to me on several occasions that she did not know why the good Lord kept her around; she missed Bill a great deal. While I will miss terribly her "Hiya honey", I know that to the thought of seeing Bill again, she would have said her trademark "goody goody" I am sure because of this poem she cut out and kept in her Bible:
To Those I Love And Those Who Love Me: When I am gone, release me, let me go. I have so many things to see and do, you mustn't tie yourself to me with tears. Be happy that we had so many years. I gave you my love, you can only guess how much you gave me in happiness. I thank you for the love you each have shown. But now it's time I traveled on alone. So, grieve a while for me, if grieve you must. Then, let your grief be comforted by trust. It's only for a while that we must be apart. So, bless the memories in your heart. I won't be far away, for life goes on. So, if you need me, call and I will come. Though you can't see or touch me, I'll be near. And, if you listen with your heart you'll hear, All my love around you soft and clear. And then, when you must come this way alone, I'll greet you with a smile and "Welcome You Home". Author Unknown.
A Graveside Service will be held on Wednesday, April 1, 2009 at 2:00 p.m. at the Evergreen Cemetery in Colorado Springs, CO.
John Benjamin Ashworth (1889 - 1966)
Pearl Belle Martin Ashworth (1893 - 1978)
William Allen Anderson (1896 - 1983)
Myrtle Odessa Ashworth Anderson (1911 - 2009)
George Othello Ashworth (1920 - 1923)*
Infant Son Ashworth (1920 - 1920)*
El Paso County
Created by: Robert Libby
Record added: Aug 18, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 40815147