Florence Georganne Sampson, a longtime Santa Cruz resident, went home to be with the Lord, on October 27, 2010, at the age of 92, after a brief illness. Her last days were spent peacefully in her own home surrounded by the love of her children and grandchilden.
Georganne Stauber was born on September 6, 1918 in Richmond, Indiana, the second of four children. While she was still very young she and her family moved to Decatur, Illinois, where Georganne, her parents and her brother and sisters lived happily for many years. As a girl she was somewhat of a tomboy, but she also loved ballet lessons and performing in dance recitals. She was always drawn to children and at the age of 19 she completed the two-year program required to become an elementary school teacher. While teaching she continued her education and completed her Bachelor of Arts degree at Millikin University in Decatur, pledging the Tri Delta Sorority. She later studied art for several years at the famed Art Institute of Chicago.
In 1946, when she was 28, Georganne set out on an adventure and moved to California. She planned to be an artist and first settled in San Jose and took a job in a cannery. She didn't care much for the work and made her way to Santa Cruz where she resumed her teaching career and where a friend introduced her to World War II veteran and future, local real estate broker Maurice "Maury" Bradley Sampson Sr. Georganne and Maury fell in love and on September 22, 1948, they were married in Carmel.
The newlyweds made their home in Santa Cruz. Georganne continued to teach in local schools, including Gault and Branciforte Elementary, and Maury built his real estate business. Georgeanne loved being around children of all ages and over the course of her career she found herself in classrooms teaching kindergartners to 9th graders. When she and Maury started their own family Georganne stopped teaching to look after their children fulltime, caring for them with the careful eye of a skilled teacher and the unfettered love of the best of mothers. As a mother, wife and friend she was a woman of integrity; honest, kind, loyal, self-sacrificing and tenderhearted, but tough-minded when needed and always up for a good laugh and a good time.
For years, Georganne and Maury played cards weekly with friends, hosted parties at their oceanfront home and followed Bay Area sports teams with a passion. As a widow, Georganne continued these favorite pursuits. She loved to play board games with her children and grandchildren - Aggravation was her favorite - and she rarely missed a televised game of the San Francisco 49ers, the Giants, or the Golden State Warriors.
Georganne loved her adopted town of Santa Cruz. She volunteered regularly at voting polls and at her church. She was a woman of strong, but quiet faith and she attended services at the Congregational Church of Soquel for fifty years or more. She was always happy to help at church, and spent years teaching Sunday school and assisting the congregation's Financial Secretary.
Georganne lost Maury in 2000. But even as a widow, into her late 80s and early 90s, she continued to embrace life taking a keen interest in her children and grandchildren, news of the day, her Bridge Clubs, her friends, her sports teams, working crossword puzzles, reading novels, and playing cards and board games with her family. A lifelong walker, she continued her noontime exercise to meet family for lunch, into her 90s, as well.
Georganne was preceded in death by her husband Maury, and her parents, Robert and Marie Stauber. She is survived by her siblings, Robert Stauber, Virginia Davenport and Barbara Welsh; her son Brad Sampson of Santa Cruz and daughters Mimi Hobin of Bakersfield, Susi Tashnick of Santa Cruz, Joni Sampson of Santa Cruz, and Maryann "Kricket" Rigby of Madera. She is also survived by sons-in-law Frank Hobin, Bill Tashnick and Keith Rigby, and daughter-in-law Joanne Sampson, and 14 grandchildren: Angie Hobin, Danny Hobin, Jayne Hobin, Maurice "Sammy" Sampson, Kellie Sampson, Meghan Sampson, Anthony Tashnick, Jamie Tashnick, Gabriel Rene, Regina Rene, Michael Rene, Chris Rene, Kristin Rigby and Morgan Rigby; and three great-grandchildren.