Elaine Frances Kennedy O’berg
September 26, 1943-November 8, 2021
On September 26, 1943, Elaine Frances Kennedy arrived in the family of Dr. Orville & Agnes Kennedy in Durango, Colorado, joining her big sister Cecilia. On November 8, 2021, Elaine was taken from us in a tragic car accident and went to spend eternity with her loving Lord & Savior Jesus Christ. At the time she had been traveling from her home in Farmington, New Mexico, to Southern California to join with other family members and friends gathering to celebrate the life of her younger sister Linda who had two weeks earlier gone to be with her Savior. Elaine was such an example of Christian faith and strength to all those around her as she courageously dealt with the disability that had challenged her all her life.
By the time Elaine was 9 years old, the family had settled in Artesia, California where her father served as a veterinarian to the dairymen in the area. Among the activities Elaine was involved in her early years, were the Artesia United Methodist Church and in local 4-H groups. Along with her father as one of the 4-H leaders, Elaine with her sister Marilyn, participated in projects, both girls having cows. Elaine’s cow “Taffy” was a memory shared by all the family, as well as Taffy’s twin’s “Tootie” and “Fruitie.” After supper in the evening, when it was Elaine’s time to do dishes, Elaine would disappear and be found out milking or taking care of her cows. High point of the year for the entire family was always the attendance at the fairs and showing their animals, especially at the LA County Fair. Holstein cows and replicas of them always remained at the center of Elaine’s memory of these happy years in her life.
These early years in Artesia were also spent in church activities and active in the Masonic organization the International Order of Rainbow for Girls. Elaine loved singing in the choir at church and loved the activities she shared with her sisters in Rainbow.
After high school, Elaine studied nursing and worked as a nurse and care giver. In later years this expanded into her providing childcare with her own day care center, often providing care to her nieces & nephew, along with other families.
After her marriage to Charles Otto in 1965, Elaine’s life was changed forever with the birth of her three daughters, beginning with Michele in 1966, Kelly in 1967 and then Jamie in 1974. They then became and remained the center of her life, expanding over the years to include, in addition to her three daughters, nine grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren.
The overriding part of Elaine’s life, remembered by all her family members and friends, was Elaine’s involvement in her church, and her devout faith in her Savior Jesus Christ. Whether it was her years at Calvary Baptist Church in Bellflower, California or her church involvement after moving to New Mexico at “The Exciting Tabernacle Baptist Church”, later known as Pinon Hills Community Church. Elaine’s life centered around her family, her church and her Christian faith. Organizing and cooking church dinners became a way of life for Elaine. For many years she oversaw the kitchen ministry at Pinon Hills Church, blessing many people with food and with friendship. This was also seen through the many Bible studies Elaine led or participated in, she had countless friends who will attest to the love and wisdom Elaine gave to them.
It was in the 1980’s that the family first moved to New Mexico. They spent 2 years in Roswell, serving in the Youth ministry at Tabernacle Baptist. In 1992 Elaine moved back to New Mexico from California, to be closer to Tim and Kelly Hargrove. Farmington would end up being her home until her death. In December of 1994 Elaine married Wayne Oberg. Wayne and Elaine built a home in Farmington and Elaine was able to enjoy growing a garden and hosting family dinners. Over the years her family grew, and Elaine’s love grew with it. She was fondly known as Mom, Grandma, Granny and Moomaw! She would tell everyone how blessed she was, despite the wheelchair or walker. We know heaven is rejoicing!
She is survived by her husband Wayne Oberg, her two sisters; Cecilia Lorts & husband Jack, and Marilyn Gaffey, by her three daughters; Michele Otto, Kelly & husband Tim Hargrove and Jamie & her husband John Karr. Grandchildren Spencer Dueck & wife Cristal, Rebecca McCabe, Tessa Chittum & husband Jacob, Troy Karr & wife Emily, Corie Hargrove and fiancé Charles Juday, Cadie Archibeque & husband Mikey, Bella Hargrove and Tristan Hargrove. Great grandchildren Zaylen McCabe, Ellie McCabe, Ezekiel McCabe, Brayden Archibeque, Addison Archibeque, Ellie Archibeque, Peyton Karr, Rylee Karr, Karter Chittum, Rhett Chittum, & Eden Juday. Also, by nieces & nephews Jackie Deckard, Geri Mackey, Ginny Grout, Martin Gaffey, Wendy Gaffey, Tamara Zabala, Robin Keuhn & Brian Frisbey and countless great nieces & nephews. Elaine was preceded in death by her parents, Dr. and Mrs. O.A. Kennedy, by her sister Linda Frisbey and her granddaughter Tanner Bell Karr.