Nov. 20, 1937 - Nov. 22, 2012
FOUNTAIN HILLS, Arizona -- Roberta Cross, beloved mother, sister, grandmother, mother-in-law, and friend, passed away surrounded by loved ones on Nov. 22, 2012, at the age of 75 due to complications from heart surgery.
She was preceded in death by her husband of 44 years, Roger Cross, in 2006. She is survived by her daughter, Dr. Kelly Cross Pyritz and husband, Dr. Jeff Pyritz of Fountain Hills, Arizona, her son, Dr. Doug Cross and wife, Heidi Cross, R.N. of Castle Rock, Colorado, and the lights of her life, grandchildren Keegan and Alaina Cross (ages 13 and 12) of Castle Rock and Bailey Pyritz (age 11) of Fountain Hills. She is also survived by sisters, Norma Nealeigh, PhD of Chadron, Nebraska, Yvonne Garner of Trenton, Nebraska, and many wonderful, dear friends.
Roberta Nealeigh was born on Nov. 20, 1937, at her grandmother's house in Trenton, Nebraska. She grew up on a farm outside of Trenton and often rode a horse to the country school she attended. She graduated from Trenton High School and taught multiple grade levels in a one room school house outside of Trenton starting at the age of 17. She went on to attend McCook Junior College in McCook, Nebraska before getting married to the love of her life, Roger Cross, on Aug. 13, 1961. Roberta and Roger moved to Pocatello, Idaho, in the fall of 1961 to attend Idaho State University where Roberta received her bachelor's degree and taught the sixth grade for several years. Roberta earned her master's degree in counseling and math from Adams State College in Alamosa, Colorado, in 1969.
In 1970, Roberta and Roger settled in Columbus, Nebraska, where they raised their children and were owners of Countryside Homes. Roberta became an avid golfer and also successfully coached her daughter's fast pitch softball team for several years. In 1996, Roberta and Roger moved to Fountain Hills, Arizona, a place they referred to as "lower heaven" and continued to enjoy golf, family and spending time with friends. Roberta was an excellent cook who enjoyed preparing meals for her loved ones on a regular basis. She was a supporter of the Fountain Hills Youth Theater and was in charge of the organization and operation of the Scottsdale Silverado Ladies Golf League since October 2000, where she developed some of the most wonderful friendships of her life.
Roberta was a role model to all who knew her, always ready to give of herself through her friendship, love and understanding. She will leave an everlasting impression on the hearts of many and will be greatly missed.
A memorial service has been planned for 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 1 at Messinger Fountain Hills Mortuary, 12065 N. Saguaro Blvd., Fountain Hills. For those who would prefer to donate to organizations Roberta supported, the family has recommended The Fountain Hills Youth Theater and The Fountain Hills Presbyterian Church.