Wendy Jo McGuire passed away in her apartment at Albuquerque Grand Senior Living on Feb. 8. She hadn’t lived there long and always felt it would be temporary, but in that time she had made friends and become essential to the running of the place. The memorial the manager and others created for her was lovely and memorable. But now that it’s fall, with Wendy’s birthday approaching, it’s time for a celebration of her life at the farm, which she had loved since 2000. Wendy was born Oct. 4, 1948, and spent her school years in the Los Alamos school system (attending her 50th class reunion last year) and then received a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at New Mexico State University; she also finished a Master’s from Boston University while stationed at Heidelberg, Germany for three years. That was when she studied and developed new training manuals for tank gunnery soldiers through HUMRRO (Human Resources Research Organization), giving her an unusual item for her resume. Later, back in New Mexico, she taught math, statistics, and pre-nursing math and science at the College of Santa Fe and Santa Fe Community College for most of the 80s and 90s. She also raised show cats (Cornish Rex) and show rabbits. And then she and her partner bought some land and started a farm near Stanley in 2000. It didn’t take long for her to become the Turkey Lady, the person who knew all about birds, from husbandry to genetics and breeding. She still loved mentoring, though, and if you needed lessons in statistics, percussion (she once owned the world’s largest kettle drum), raising all sorts of poultry, playing guitar, or grant writing, she’d be happy to teach you, sometimes for a fee, and sometimes pro bono. She was very generous with her time and help, and when she could no longer work on the farm she was missed by a great many friends. She is survived by her siblings Scott (and Mary) of Heathsville ,Va., twin Paul (and Carole) of Locust Grove, Va., and Jane (and Kurt) Black of Albuquerque, and partner Barbara Mann of Stanley. If you would like to come remember Wendy on the afternoon of Oct. 7, you would be most welcome. For more info and directions, email gallinagal@yahoo.com, or you can phone 505-249-6435 and leave a message.

Leota Harriman
Leota Harriman

Leota started working for The Independent in 2006, working her way up through the ranks. An employee buyout in 2010 led to her ownership of the newspaper. Leota has served on the board of the N.M. Press Association, and is currently its First Vice President. She is passionate about health and wellness, especially mental health, and loves making art. She can be reached at news.ind.editor@gmail.com.