Martha Anne Riggs Chuber

Martha Anne “Muffin” Chuber passed from this life July 26, 2017 in mid-afternoon with family and friends nearby. She died from a prolonged bout with dementia which had its earliest stages in 2003.  

She is survived by her husband, Stewart, after 64½ years of marriage, and daughter, Valerie, and her husband, Angel, and granddaughter, Jasmine, of San Antonio. Other relatives are nephew Eric Chuber of San Antonio and his family, niece Jan Fish and her family of the Woodlands, and sister-in-law Becky Riggs and her family of California.

Muffin was born Dec. 2, 1929, in Tientsin, China, the daughter of Harriet (Spring) and Donald Riggs, who was a foreign exchange trader for American Express. She had older twin brothers, Dean and Don, now deceased, and a sister who passed at a very early age. Her mother was an opera singer, and Muffin, with this musical gene, played the piano since age 4 and later became a gifted pianist who challenged the classics throughout her life. She studied under Madam Balenke in Palo Alto. With her family, she travelled around the world three times before the age of 12 when they repatriated to the United States in 1941. Muff graduated from Oregon State University in 1951 with dual majors, music and accounting. She entered Stanford University in 1952 where she met Stewart in a square dance band; she played the accordion and he the guitar. His first words to her were “Gimme a C”; and the courtship ended in marriage on June 6, 1953, in Redwood City, Calif.

Since Stewart was a geologist, they toured the oil patch from Tripoli, Libya, to Sacramento and Bakersfield, Calif., then Midland, Houston, and finally Schulenburg, where they have resided for the past 39 years. Along the working path they had a son, Jeffrey, born in California, 1961, now deceased, and a daughter, Valerie, born in Texas, 1964.

Muffin loved cats. Her first, named Spiffy, was purchased from an animal shelter in Midland, and taken to Libya via London. The cat had a ½-inch thick dossier in the Company office, and lived for 22 years. There have been many others since that time, but Angelo, Bianco, and Andre were her favorites.

She was an avid sportswoman. In 1954, after learning how to play golf, she held the ladies nine-hole course record, shooting a 42 on the U.S. Wheelus Field golf course in Tripoli (sand greens). She beat Stew by five strokes on that memorable day. More recently Muff and Stew played doubles on the Frisch Auf! tennis courts, and they even took home medals in competition at the first Smithville Tennis Event.

And most important of all, she was a partner and confident in all of the company operations – always optimistic, understanding of failure, excited about the next wildcat, and overjoyed with success when it happened.

She really loved St. James and the many friends there. She was eager to purchase a columbarium slot for the family, and she will rest there with Jeffrey under the branches of the huge oak tree sheltering the place. May they rest in peace.

A memorial service and inurnment will be held at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017, at the St. James Episcopal Church, 156 North Monroe St., La Grange, TX 78945. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to St. James, the Brazos Valley Hospice, 1048 N. Jefferson, La Grange, or the Gardenia Janssen Animal Shelter, 240 Svoboda Lane, La Grange.

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