Obituaries 12-04-2012

Rogina Louisa Haase Jeffries

Active volunteer in neighborhood

Rogina Louisa Haase Jeffries of Boston, loving wife since 1989 of Stephen Benjamin Jeffries and mother of Julia Preston Faulkner Jeffries, age 12, and Philip John Roosevelt Jeffries, age 10, passed away on Nov. 11, after a long illness.

Mrs. Jeffries was devoted to her immediate family and numerous cousins and godchildren, in whose lives she made a real difference.

Mrs. Jeffries was born Aug. 28, 1959, in New York City, and grew up in upstate New York in Cobleskill and West Winfield. She was a 1977 graduate of Mount Markham High School, West Winfield, N.Y., and a 1982 cum laude graduate of Mount Holyoke College of South Hadley.

Mrs. Jeffries’ technical career as a software engineer at Lincoln Laboratory (MIT) began in 1982 and lasted a little over a decade. During that time, she worked mostly on satellite surveillance efforts, supporting two major programs. The first program, a new camera for the Ground-based Electro-Optical Deep Space Surveillance System, resulted in many trips to Lincoln’s field site on the White Sands Missile Range, near Socorro, N.M. In addition to providing a high level of software support, she developed a taste for Rio Grande valley green chili.

After a period of time working on other ground-based sensors, she began work on the Space-Based Visible Sensor, which was installed on the Missile Defense Agency’s Mid-Course Space Experiment satellite. This satellite launched in 1996 and operated for 13 years as an important part of the space surveillance network. Mrs. Jeffries’ contributions were an important element in the early orbital operations; her manual, which provided incalculable assistance in understanding how to run the sensor efficiently, was referenced daily. Even as the sensor began to age, her contributions continued to be of value to understand how to continue productive operations.

After retiring from the laboratory, Mrs. Jeffries focused on extensive volunteer work including:

•Serving as vice chair of the Massachusetts Board of Registration of Architects for over a decade,

•As an active member of The Junior League of Boston and treasurer one year of Showhouse,

•As a dedicated member of several yacht club race committees (Eastern Yacht Club in Marblehead and the New York Yacht Club, N.Y.C., and Newport, R.I., amongst others) including service as a volunteer on the Day Marina of the Atlanta 1996 Sailing Olympics, which were staged in the waters off Savannah, Ga.,

•As a volunteer with the Delta Society therapy dog program visiting nursing homes with her Standard Poodle dog “Cawley,”

• Serving as a trustee of the Theodore Roosevelt Association and as the founder and webmaster of its website, for which she was awarded the Bertha B. Rose Award in 2007 for outstanding service to the Theodore Roosevelt Association,

• As a member, and chairman for several years, of the Garden Guild of The Church of the Advent on Beacon Hill,

• As an enthusiastic member and The Beacon Hill Garden Club, from which she received several window box contest citations over the years (run annually in conjunction with the Beacon Hill Civic Association), for whom she served as Corresponding Secretary for many years and from whom she was awarded the Temple Bowl in 2010 (also known as the Beacon Hill Garden Club Bowl this award was established by Anna M. Temple in 1958 in recognition of valuable service to the Club and given in memory of Samuel and Ruth Temple),

• As a member of the Ward Five Republican Committee from 1994 until her death,

• And as an active member of The Chilton Club in Boston and a non-resident member of both the Coral Reef Yacht Club in Miami, Fla., and the Saint Petersburg Yacht Club in Tampa/Saint Petersburg, Fla.

In 2000, she received the wonderful new of her first pregnancy followed by the devastating news of a right kidney tumor. It was hoped that the cancer had not spread but at the year five annual checkup many metastasized tumors were discovered. In the last seven or so years of her life, Mrs. Jeffries persevered through aggressive treatments for 13 brain tumors, six bone tumors, 12 chest tumors and two spinal cord tumors. She fought her disease with incredible determination and bravery while never wavering in her positive attitude towards life and her encouraging and active ways concerning her family and friends.

Mrs. Jeffries is also survived by her in-laws Benjamin and Lorraine Jeffries of Stonington, Maine; her Uncle Roger and Aunt Jean Mallery and their children and families; Roger John Mallery and Susan Mallery, as well as her Aunt Sylvia Mallery, all of Cobleskill, N.Y.

A Mass of the Resurrection will be celebrated in thanksgiving for the life of Mrs. Jeffries on Saturday, Jan. 12, at 11 a.m. at The Church of the Advent, 30 Brimmer St., Boston.

Her family requests that in lieu of flowers donations be made to: Rogina L. Jeffries Fund, Kidney Cancer Association, Attention: Donna Yesner, Post Office Box 803338 #38269, Chicago, IL  60680-3338.

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