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Judy Anderson Harper Obituary


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“I never got the chance to meet Judy. I wish I had though. I would have liked to get to know my grandmother before she passed away. When my father...Read More »
1 of 23 | Posted by: Angelica Harper - Irving, TX

“I lived next door to Judy approx. 23 yrs. ago. I remember how she could take a stool and paint a vine of flowers up the 4 legs and then blend in...Read More »
2 of 23 | Posted by: Sheila S. Clanton - Tyler, TX

“My heart and mind can not believe that Judy is nolonger with us. She was a most precious person to so many, just knowing her filled many lives with...Read More »
3 of 23 | Posted by: Audrene Shahrdar

“I am so sad and sorry to hear that Judy is no longer with us. She has been a great inspiration for me and my daughter. We have talked many times on...Read More »
4 of 23 | Posted by: Starshine - Albany, NY

“Judy was my first e-friend, and my "best" e-friend. I was so lucky to have her advice and designs to re-start my needlepoint hobby. We also shared...Read More »
5 of 23 | Posted by: Susan Toy - Aurora, CO - E-friend

“I came across Judy's blog a few weeks ago and saw the most beautiful Chinese needlepoint piece, one based on a bowl she received from her son. I...Read More »
6 of 23 | Posted by: Jane Brown-O'Gorman - Titusville, NJ

“My twin sister and I (La Verne and La Vonne Ashton) attended school from the first grade through 3rd grade with Jane at Alta Vista in Abilene and...Read More »
7 of 23 | Posted by: La Verne Ashton Dobbs

“The last that I heard from Judy was on January 20th when she sent me a copy of an old photo of her parents. She had first contacted me through the...Read More »
8 of 23 | Posted by: Byron Penrod - Abilene, TX

“I met Judy shortly after moving here eleven years ago. We swiftly became supporters of each others art. She was always full of praise and happy to...Read More »
9 of 23 | Posted by: Kimberly Smith - Austin, TX

“I only knew Judy online and through her writings. But my heart is saddened to hear of her passing. I am certain her friends and family are grieving...Read More »
10 of 23 | Posted by: Donna - Reston, VA - friend

“Judy and I had such a great friendship...how much fun we had over many, many hours sharing our love of color, pattern, design, and stitching. We...Read More »
11 of 23 | Posted by: Allison Aller - Washougal, WA

“I discovered Judy's blogs Possibilities and Freebies a couple of years ago and always enjoyed reading them. She was a fine designer and I loved her...Read More »
12 of 23 | Posted by: Gina Cummins - Madison, AL

“I never met Judy in person but I always admired her stitchery skills and designs and her generous and wonderful attitude toward life and her family. ...Read More »
13 of 23 | Posted by: Ms. Sammy Rusk - Garland, TX

“I also never met Judy in person but we emailed all the time and read each other's blogs. I stitched a few pieces for her a couple of years ago and...Read More »
14 of 23 | Posted by: Pat Miller - Arden, NC

“I never had the honor of meeting Judy in person; however, I followed her blog, emailed her when I had questions about her designs, and enjoyed her...Read More »
15 of 23 | Posted by: Karen Smith - Arlington Heights, IL

“The whirlwind has stilled under the broad Texas sky. ”
16 of 23 | Posted by: Frances Ruby - Austin, TX

“I am so, so sorry to hear of Judy's passing. Unfortunately, I did not have the opportunity to meet her in person, but I was a regular follower of...Read More »
17 of 23 | Posted by: Mary Smith - Tulsa, OK

“To Judy's family- Judy and I never met in person. We've been online friends for a number of years. It seems she had a number of us! We'd email...Read More »
18 of 23 | Posted by: Laurie - Agoura HIlls, CA

“Although I never met Judy I read her blog and looked forward to seeing her creative ventures. My heart hurt when I heard of her passing. She...Read More »
19 of 23 | Posted by: Deborah Thomas - Blog Follower

“I'm sorry that I never had the honor of meeting Judy in person. I did, however, follow her blog and enjoyed her contribution to the world of...Read More »
20 of 23 | Posted by: Coni Rich - Mishawaka, IN

“I am so saddened by the passing of Judy. I am the youngest cousin who looked up at Judy with awe. She was beautiful in body and spirit and soooo...Read More »
21 of 23 | Posted by: Ann Hannigan - Cousin

“I am so saddened to hear of Judy Harper's death. I "met" Judy online shortly after I started my Blog. Judy has been one of my most supportive...Read More »
22 of 23 | Posted by: Liz Morrow - Las Vegas, NV

“May she rest in peace and each of you feel our Lord's comfort and consolation during this difficult time. With sincere sympathy, Nita ”
23 of 23 | Posted by: Nita White


Judy Anderson Harper, artist, needlepoint designer, teacher and writer, found peace on February 28, 2011. She was born in Austin on July 6, 1940, a fifth generation Texan, the older of two daughters, to Robert Gilmore Anderson and Patricia Shipley Anderson. She graduated from Abilene High School and went on to attend the University of Texas at Austin from 1958 to 1962. She was a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, and studied interior design and Spanish, at a time when female undergraduates were "coeds" and had to dress up to go to class. Judy thought this was unnecessary and stifled her individuality.

It was at the University that Judy fell in love with Mexican culture and art, an interest which was only intensified when she moved to Mexico City with her first husband, Joe Ruelas. After three children and a brief career as an interior designer in Austin, she moved to East Texas and married her second husband, John Gordon Harper. This marriage produced three more children, and it was during this the time behind the "Pine Curtain" her career as a needlepoint designer really blossomed. She enjoyed success as a nationally syndicated newspaper columnist and magazine editor as well as teaching classes in art and design to appreciative audiences. She appeared on the "Today Show" to discuss her intricate needlepoint designs. After this period she lived in Abilene, Florida, and in 1995 she moved back to Austin to take care of her first grandchild, Madeline Jane Anderson. Her creativity continued in her designs for her grandchildren, both needlepoint and also in the form of painted furniture and pottery. She continued to design for needlepoint stores in Austin and elsewhere and for St. Andrew's School and St. David's and Good Shepherd Episcopal churches. She also started writing a blog, "Possibilities, etc!" which increased her already wide circle of friends. She will be remembered for her talent, creativity, and for allowing her children to stay up past bedtime to watch movies, as long as they were "classics." Fortunately for them, "classics" constituted a rather large swath of movies, from anything starring Victor Mature to Elizabeth Taylor. She even let us watch "Monty Python's Flying Circus" late, on Sunday nights. For these indulgences we are grateful. Also, passing on the same day as Jane Russell would have made her chortle with glee.

Judy leaves us to join her beloved granddaughter, Madeline, who will welcome her Granny to an artists' colony in Heaven, after they make a stop for a package of "Cherry Sours." She is survived by her mother, Patricia Shipley Anderson, her sister Patricia Gayle Anderson, both of Abilene; her six children, Joe Anderson and his wife Sarah, Jean Marie Hunt, Charles Ruelas, Jennifer Harper Brenner and her husband Steve, James Harper and Samuel Harper. Judy's earthbound grandchildren are Julia Frances Anderson, Grace Hickman, Jake Brenner, Seth Brenner, Sophie Hunt and Sierra Harper.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions be made to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital or Austin Hospice's Christopher House. "He hath given His angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways."
Psalms 91:11