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Charlene Martin Ward was born Nov. 17, 1924, in Artesia to Charles Ray and Jennie Lee (Williams) Martin, the eldest of three sisters.

After graduation from Artesia High School, she attended Stephens College and the University of Colorado before graduating with a degree in business from the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA).

In 1948, she married Edwin Henry Ward, and the couple had three children: Steve, Jennie and Sara.

Charlene was devoted to farming, ranching and insurance in Artesia, Eddy County and Lea County. Both she and Eddie “Pook” were actively involved in many civic, religious and social endeavors in the community.

Survivors include her sisters, Rosemary Martin Ferguson and Alice Ray Martin Morgan; granddaughters Jennifer Ward Frost and Rhonda Ward; daughter Jennie Ward Vuksich, son-in-law Gregory D. Vuksich, and grandchildren Catherine Vuksich and Alexander Ward Vuksich; daughter Sara Ward Sims, son-in-law Steven Gary Sims, granddaughter Anna Sims Byers with great-grandsons Jack Steven Byers and Beau Martin Byers, and granddaughter Abbie Sims Butler and grandson-in-law Tye Butler.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Edwin Henry Ward, and her son, Stephen Sterling Ward.

Graveside services will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 23, at Woodbine Cemetery.

Memorial contributions may be made to the E.H. Ward Cancer Fund, c/o University of New Mexico, 900 Camino de Salud NE, Albuquerque, N.M., 87131.

Arrangements are under the direction of Terpening & Son Mortuary. Condolences may be expressed online at www.artesiafunerals.com.