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Lifelong education was way of life for Eva May de Chazal

Tuesday, February 5, 2013 | 7:01 p.m. CST; updated 10:06 p.m. CST, Wednesday, February 6, 2013

COLUMBIA – Eva May de Chazal led a life dedicated to constantly learning about and exploring the world around her.

“Through education she became a citizen of the world instead of a citizen of just a tiny place,” her daughter, Suzanne de Chazal, said.

Mrs. De Chazal died in her home on Jan 18, 2013. She was 94.

Mrs. De Chazal was born in Alligator, Miss., on May 6, 1918, to Lily Mae Riley Colson and Charles Colson. Growing up in a small town, she yearned to educate herself by traveling outside of Mississippi. She graduated from her one-room high school and attended Texas Women’s University in Denton, Texas. She later attended Southern Methodist University and received a master's degree in English.

She then taught English as a second language at Louisiana State University. There she met her husband, L.E. Marc de Chazal, who was working on his doctorate. They were married Sept. 6, 1951. Columbia became their new home when her husband was offered a job to teach chemical engineering at MU.

Mrs. De Chazal was bilingual in English and Spanish. She used her skills to translate for adolescents in the court system. She also taught English in prisons.

She is survived by her husband, L.E. Marc de Chazal; two daughters, Claire de Chazal and her husband, Francisco Santamarina, of San Francisco, and Suzanne de Chazal of Columbia; and a sister, Mildred Wearn, of Atlanta.

Her sister, Mayme Schoonover, of Atlanta died earlier.

The family plans to hold a memorial in May.

Memorial donations can be made to the Food Bank of Central Missouri, 2101 Vandiver Drive, Columbia, MO 65202.


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