Braille Monitor

July, 1996

In Memoriam:

From the Editor Emeritus: With the death of Pauline Gomez, another of our stalwart members has passed from the scene. I first met Pauline over forty years ago and enjoyed a close friendship with her throughout the rest of her life. Some of the words that come to mind when I think of Pauline are: vivacious, open, sincere, gracious, determined, and generous. She was all of those things, and much more. I mourn her passing as not only an organizational but also a personal loss. Here is her obituary as it appeared in the May 2 edition of the New Mexican:

Pauline L. Gomez, 76, passed away at her home in Santa Fe, Wednesday, May 1, 1996.

Pauline was born in Moriarty, New Mexico, March 29, 1920.

She was blind from birth.

At the age of five, she was sent to the New Mexico School for the Visually Handicapped in Alamagordo, graduating in 1940.

She was the first blind student to attend the University of New Mexico, graduating in 1945.

In 1946, she started "Los Ninos Kindergarten" which was a learning center for hundreds of children for the next 30 years.

In 1956, when the New Mexico Federation of the Blind was organized, Pauline became a charter member. She attributed her enthusiasm, dedication, and appreciation of life to her membership in this organization.

Pauline was an active member of the community. She was a member of the Santa Fe Women's Division of the Chamber of Commerce, the American Association of University Women, and the St. Francis Cathedral Altar Society.

Among her honors and awards are: Santa Fe Woman of the Year in 1967; First runner-up of the Handicapped Woman of the Year; first recipient of the Blind Educator of the Year; in 1985 Pauline was made a "Santa Fe Living Treasure."

In 1989 Pauline was recognized in Newsweek magazine as a national hero. Her work and efforts, as teacher and leader of New Mexico's organization for the blind, earned her distinction as an outstanding individual from New Mexico.