Lenda Elias Persiko
December 11, 2007
Lenda Elias Persiko passed away Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2007, after a long illness. She was born Aug. 8, 1921, in Manchester, N.H., to Deeb Elias and Wardi Abdenour. She married Fred Persiko in 1942 at Barksdale Field Military Base in Shreveport, La.
For the past seven years, she lived in Carbondale, close to her son, Bo, and his family. She enjoyed the Roaring Fork Valley beginning in the 1960s, and moved to Denver with her husband in 1967. In Denver, she managed the flight attendants for Frontier Airlines, and kept in touch with many of them after she retired.
When Fred was the director of a children’s homes in the New York area, Lenda assisted in the care of hundreds of young people, many of whom regarded her as a foster mother into their adult lives.
Lenda enjoyed music and theater, gardening, and the volunteer work she did for many agencies. She taught ESL at one of Denver’s community colleges and was a mentor and friend to many of her students. She loved the travels she shared with her husband to Europe, Mexico and all over the United States.
Before and after her retirement, she assisted families from several foreign countries when they came to Denver, and was an interpreter for Arabic speaking visitors. She also cooked Middle Eastern food for them, a tribute to her Lebanese heritage.
Lenda had a warm smile and a rich greeting for everyone she encountered. Survivors include her sons Bo (Sue) Persiko, and Bob (Alexandra) Persiko of Maryland; foster son Joe Gugliardo of Denver; brother Abe (Sheila) Elias of New Jersey; sister- in- law Olly Elias of Massachusetts; eight grandchildren; two great- grandchildren; three nephews; one niece; two great-nephews and two great-nieces. All were in close contact with her.
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She was preceded in death by her husband, Fred, and brother, Leo.
A memorial was held at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 1270 Poplar St. in Denver, on Friday, Dec. 7. In lieu of flowers, people are encouraged to give to their favorite charity in Lenda’s name or to Urban Peak, a residential program for children.