School 09

Calista Agnes Schwartz

June 2, 1934 ~ November 25, 2023 (age 89) 89 Years Old

Calista Schwartz Obituary

Calista Agnes Schwartz, age 89, died on November 25, 2023, from Parkinson’s Disease. She died as she had wished - at home, at peace and in the arms of her loving family.

Born in Syracuse, New York, to Robert Foster Steadman and Calista Lewis Steadman, she spent her childhood in the small town of Marcellus with her four beloved brothers. She moved to Detroit, Michigan in her teens and remained there through much of her adult life.

She was educated and married in Detroit, gaining a Master’s Degree in Library Science from Wayne State University and working as a school librarian for 25 years in the Southfield Public School System. Upon retirement, she moved to Highlands Ranch, Colorado with her youngest daughter and family. She loved Colorado and made it her home. She spent the last years of her life living with her eldest daughter and son-in-law, in Centennial, Colorado.

After a 40-year marriage to Robert Edgar Harding (deceased), she entered a very happy 23-year long marriage to Daniel Owen Schwartz (d. September 29, 2021).

She was a wonderful, intelligent woman who was kind to everyone she met. Thoughtful and generous, she kept a loving and positive outlook on life even when she became very ill.

Calista remained a lifelong reader and teacher. She was an early advocate for teachers’ unions, cared deeply about Democratic politics and volunteered her time working with immigrants on literacy issues. She traveled the world, from China to the South Pacific, Europe to the Caribbean, and in her later years especially enjoyed far-flung cruises with her husband Daniel.

Although her work in school libraries and her community efforts were rewarding, her family was her most important vocation.

She is survived by four children: Elizabeth Harding (Neil Rutledge); John (Katy) Harding, Robert Harding, Jr. (Sandra Ramirez), Calista Harding-Dalley (Scott Dalley); and five grandchildren whom she adored: Chelsea Dalley (Mark Wright), Bradley (Kerry) Harding, Neil Harding-Rutledge (Jessica Gerne), John Harding, and Connor Dalley (Kacey Leggio). She took great joy in her great-grandchild, Jamie Harding-Rutledge.

She is preceded in death by two brothers – Lewis and James Steadman – and survived by two brothers – Robert and Richard Steadman of Traverse City, Michigan.

She loved visiting her many close friends in the Unitarian Universalist Church and elsewhere, with whom she traveled and laughed, and whom she supported as they supported her. Please feel free to share memories of Calista here. Plans for a memorial will be announced at a later date. Memorial donations may be made to the First Universalist Church of Denver, 4101 E. Hampton Ave., Denver, CO 80222.

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