Patsy June (Bozarth) Matney was born on July 13, 1943 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Her family moved to Lamont in 1951, eventually settling near Derby Acres. June met the great love her life on a school bus at the age of thirteen, when Howard Matney first pulled her pigtails. June graduated from Taft High School in 1960. She and Howard married on June 29, 1963 and in 1964 they graduated together from Northern Arizona University with degrees in education. Her first job was as a first grade teacher in Coachella. The couple eventually returned to Taft where June taught early elementary school at Taft College, then kindergarten and first grade at Taft Primary.
Her quiet and patient exterior was misleading of the educator who was a determined advocate for her students. June encouraged confidence in children others might have written off. A lifelong educator and persistent activist for children, June routinely and without regret spent most of her paycheck buying books and supplies for her students. When the state of California mandated teachers no longer hug their students she offered her letter of resignation. The principal handed her letter back. June continued to hug her kids until she retires as, “it might be the only hug they get all day.” While quiet, June had an amazing sense of humor which you’d miss if you weren’t listening closely.
June lived a full life filled with family, laughter, love of teaching and adoration of her grandchildren.
June is preceded in death by her parents, Joe D. and Inola Bozarth; her brother, Jody Bozarth; sister, Virginia Dilbeck. She is survived by her husband of 55 years, Howard Matney; brother, Ted Bozarth and his wife; daughter, Melissa Taylor (son-in-law Randy Taylor), daughter, Donna Matney (son-in-law Mark Maciejewski) grandchildren, Trenton, Elena, Sophia, Max and Bethany, and many beloved nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews. She also leaves behind thousands of students that she touched and loved dearly.
A graveside service will be held for family and friends Saturday August 4, 2018 at 10:00 am at the West Side District Cemetery in Taft. The arrangements are under the direction of the Greenlawn Funeral Home Southwest. www.Greenlawnm-c.com