Audrey June Stall Ryan

Audrey June Stall Ryan, a Chandler native and member of a prominent pioneer family, died on Feb. 21, 2012, 19 years to the day after losing her husband of 43 years, Robert David Ryan.


Audrey was born to Adah Ware Stall and John Franklin Stall on May 28, 1927, in the old LeSueur home in Mesa, which at the time, was used for delivering babies. The LeSueur home was the site on which the Southside District Hospital would eventually be built. She joined big brother, Klyle, and they lived on the family farm, 160 acres of land on the northwest corner of Cooper and Germann Roads in Chandler.


With the Great Depression of 1929, the family found themselves impoverished and unable to keep their land. The family farm, which Audrey's grandfather, David Washington Stall, had homesteaded since 1910, was lost because they could not pay the $400 tax bill. Audrey's father then went to work for the Robinson family, who ran the San Marcos Hotel, and the Stalls lived on the Robinson farm on the corner of Pecos and McQueen Roads.


Audrey attended Cleveland Elementary School and Chandler High School, which accommodated seventh through 12th grades, graduating from high school in 1945. When she was 15, while attending high school, she worked for Joe and Alice Woods at the Rowena movie theater on Boston Street. In 1944 the Woods built a new theater, the Parkway, and Audrey continued to work for them. El Zocalo restaurant is now in that location, and if you're having dinner on the patio, you are sitting on the site of the old theater! During her high school years, Audrey was a cheerleader and very active in any civic and extracurricular activity that came her way, a tradition she continued throughout her entire life.


During this time, the Stall family lived in a small house on Buffalo Street across from the San Marcos. The home no longer stands and has been replaced by condominiums. Years earlier, her dad, Pop Stall, worked as a trim carpenter during the construction and finish work of the San Marcos Hotel.


Upon graduation from high school, Audrey attended nursing school in Tucson at St. Mary's Hospital. After becoming a surgical nurse, she came back home and worked for Southside District Hospital in Mesa, on the same piece of land where she had been born 21 years earlier.


Robert David Ryan came into her life in the fall of 1948. He invited Audrey to a dance at the San Marcos Hotel on October 4, and they danced all night, after which they both went home and told their moms, "This is the one!" Bob proposed on Feb. 14, 1949, and they were married two months later on Easter Sunday, April 17.


They settled into their new home and new life just south of Chandler, while operating their cotton farm and raising four active boys. Audrey gave so much of her time, talent and love to the community, with a special fondness in her heart for PEO, Chandler Service Club, Boy Scouts of America, Chandler Public Library, Chandler Regional Hospital, the Chandler Historical Society and Chandler United Methodist Church.


In spite of all she accomplished in her life, her priority was the bond she had with her family and friends. Her grandchildren and great-grandchildren, who called her Gammie, were blessed to have her in their lives. As Eddie Basha put it, "Audrey was the crown jewel of Chandler." 

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