Details for Obit Only - Ad from 2019-01-13

Birgitta Norén Gaud BirgittaNorénGaudwasborninStockholm,Swedenon June5,1939.ShepassedawayonThursday,December27,2018, withherlovingfamilybyherside. WhenBirgittawasveryyoung,herfamilymovedfrom StockholmtoDjursholm,anearbyquietsuburb.Shehada youngerbrotherandtwoyoungersisters,andastheoldestchild, helpedherworkingparentsraisehersiblings.Inherteensand twenties,sheledanadventurouslifebothinSwedenandabroad. Whenshewas14-years-old,herfathertookBirgittaandher brotheronasummerbicycletouraroundpartofSweden,staying inyouthhostelsalongtheway.Thefollowingyearshewentto scoutcampatKarlskronainsouthernSwedenontheBalticSea. At17,shespentthesummerworkingfortheSwedishTourist AssociationalsoatKarlskrona.Thenextyearsheworkedforthe SwedishTouristAssociationatAbiskoinLaplandjustsouthof theArcticCircle.Thereshepreparedfoodfortouristsgoingtothe AbiskoNationalParktohikeinthemountains. Birgittagraduatedfromhighschoolin1958andspent mostofthefollowingyearasanaupairinEnglandforaSwedish familywithtwosmallchildrenandanewborn,andthere solidifiedherEnglishlanguageskills.AfterreturningtoSweden, shetooka6-monthcourseforwomenlivinginruralareas,e.g.onfarms,thatcoverednutrition,cooking, sewing,milkingcowsandhowtopreparefoodfromwildberries,otherfruit,mushrooms,etc. Inspring1960,BirgittawasanaupairinaSwedishfamilyinwhichthephysicianfatherwasworking inNewYorkCity.ShetookthetwoboystoCentralPark,whichwasnearby,andtherefoundagroupof friendsamongotheraupairswhoalsofrequentedtheparkwiththeiryoungcharges. BackinSwedenin1960,Birgittacompletedhertraininginmicrobiology.Sheandafriendtook additionaltraininginvirologyandthensheworkedattheKarolinskaInstituteinthelabofinternationally knownDoctorandProfessorErlingNorrby.Afterseveralyears,BirgittaaskedDrNorrbyforhelpinadvancing herknowledgeandskillsinvirologyabroad.BirgittamovedtoMassachusettsGeneralHospitalinBoston in1965toworkwithDrDavidLangonresearchoncytomegalovirus(CMV).Afterseveralyears,DavidLang receivedanappointmentatDukeUniversityHospital,Birgittahelpedhimmovehisvirologylabthere,and continuedtoworkinhislab. BirgittawasagooddancerandbeganattendingweeklydanceswiththeChapelHillFolkDanceClub. Throughthisgroupshemetherfuturehusband,BillGaud.AfterhefinishedhisdoctorateattheUniversity ofNorthCarolinaatChapelHill,theygotmarriedandin1970movedtoFlagstaffwhereBillhadaccepteda jobatNorthernArizonaUniversityintheBiologyDepartment.TheyandanothercouplewhocametoNAU inbiologythenextyearstartedapopularfolkdancegroupinFlagstaffwhichpersistedforatleast20years. In2014,BillandBirgittareturnedtoChapelHillforthe50threunionoftheFolkdanceClub,inwhichmore than200dancersfromallovertheUSAparticipated. Birgitta’s son,Michael,wasbornin1973,andherdaughter,Tina,wasbornin1975.Birgittaensured thechildrenlearnedabouttheirSwedishheritage,teachingthemtospeakSwedish,introducingthemto Swedishcustomsandfood,and,withBill,takingthemtoSwedensothechildrenwouldseethecountry andgettoknowtheirrelatives. Backhome,BirgittaworkedatFlagstaffMedicalCenterinthelaboratoryasaphlebotomistand microbiologytechnician.WhenBillwasawardedasabbaticalbyNAU,heworkedonnitrogenphysiology inpinetreesatTheSwedishUniversityofAgriculturalSciencesin thesouthofUppsala.Meanwhile,Birgittaenrolledtheiryoung childreninSwedishpreschool.Uppsalawascloseenoughto Djursholmformanyvisitswithfamily. AfterreturningtoFlagstaff,Birgittareturnedtoherjobat FlagstaffMedicalCenterbutalsotookacourseinhistologyat NAUtaughtbyMargeGlendenning,whichincludedtechniques ofslidepreparationforhistologicalexamination.Eventually,Bill wasawardedasecondsabbaticalandthefamilyreturnedto UppsalaandtoTheSwedishUniversityofAgriculturalSciences. WhilethechildrenwereinSwedishschool,Birgittaworkedin thehistologylabofUppsalaUniversityHospitalpreparingtissues frompatientsamplesfordiagnosis. BackinFlagstaffin1990,BirgittatookajobatNorthern ArizonaDermatologyCenterinthehistologylab,whereshe workeduntilsheretiredin2007. BirgittawasanactivecommunitycitizeninFlagstaff, volunteeringinseverallocalorganizationsandsupportinglocal arts.AttheChurchoftheEpiphany,shewasalong-timemember oftheAltarGuildaswellasmanagedtheAltarFlowerMinistry, alwaysensuringthepresence,thededications,andthebeauty oftheflowersatthealtareachweek.ShewasadedicatedmemberoftheFlagstaffAssistanceLeague, whichrunsthethriftshopCedarClosettoobtainfundstosupportthecommunity,especiallytheKidde Closetwhichprovidedmaterialsforchildrenandmothersinneed,preparingdonateditemsforresale,and workingtheregister.ShealsotookherturnaschairoftheKiddeClosetandearnedtheBettyBearaward forherservice.SheenjoyedattendingconcertsattheFlagstaffSymphonyandplaysatTheatrikos.She belongedtotheFlagstaffFriendsofTraditionalMusicanddancedatthemonthlycontradances.Shewasan originalmemberofheractivebridgegroupthatoriginatedinthe1970s,andwasamemberoftheR-to-R hikingclub.SheparticipatedintheSonsofNorwayorganizationforthosewithScandinavianheritage.She lovedbirds,wasamemberofboththeNorthernArizonaAudubonSocietyaswellastheNationalAudubon Society,enjoyedbirdwalks,assistedinbirdcounts,andkeptseveralbirdfeedersinthebackandfrontofthe house.Shevolunteeredwithtwoseparategroupstopickuptrashandlitteralongtrails,roads,andremove invasiveplantsfromthelandscape.Shealsoplayedtennisformanyyears,bothsinglesanddoubles. Birgittafeltapersonalobligationtocontributewhatshecouldtosupportorganizationsthatshe believedworkforthebenefitofourenvironment,thecommunity,andwhichhelppeoplewhoneed assistance.Sheespeciallysupportedlocalorganizations:ChurchoftheEpiphany,AssistanceLeague ofFlagstaff,LowellObservatory,FlagstaffSymphony,KNAU,NorthernArizonaUniversity,Museumof NorthernArizona,ArizonaPBS,ArboretumofFlagstaff,TheNatureConservancy,DoctorsWithoutBorders, WildernessSociety,andtheAmericanCancerSociety. Birgittaissurvivedbyherhusband,BillGaud,hertwochildren,MichaelandTinaGaud,brotherKarlJohanNorén,sistersMarianneBäckströmandKatarinaSandberg,in-laws,nieces,andnephews. ThefuneralservicewillbeatChurchoftheEpiphanyinFlagstaffat423NBeaverStreetonSaturday, January26,at10am.Areceptionwillfollowinthecommunityroomdownstairs.Inlieuofflowers, donationsinBirgitta’s namewouldbegreatlyappreciatedbythetwocharitablecommunityorganizations towhichBirgittadonatedsomuchofhertime-theChurchoftheEpiphanyandTheAssistanceLeagueof Flagstaff.
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