Cover photo for Verna Aldous's Obituary
Verna Aldous Profile Photo

Verna Aldous

February 18, 1924 — June 30, 2019

Verna Aldous

Verna Greaves Aldous of Portola Valley, CA, passed away on June 30, 2019.  She was born in Preston, Idaho on February 18, 1924. She loved dances, movies, tennis, and especially her horses.  She was on her high school debate team and served in student government.  She was an excellent student and was active in her church.

Verna earned a bachelor’s degree in Social Work at the University of Utah.  There she met Newell Aldous, who was studying electronic engineering.  They were married in 1946 in Preston, ID, following Newell’s service in the US Navy.  They were later sealed in the Logan Temple.

Newell and Verna followed his engineering career, with brief stops in Camden, NJ and Alamogordo, NM before settling in Portola Valley, CA.  The family loved the views of surrounding foothills from their home.  All were all avid gardeners.

Verna was active in her church, where she was best known as the Cultural Refinement Teacher for the women’s organization (Relief Society) for many years.

She was a full-time homemaker through the 1950's when the children were young.  In the 1960's, Verna entered the work force as a social worker with the American Red Cross.  Early assignments were helping servicemen and their families, and refugees from Vietnam.  She served in Menlo Park, Burlingame, and San Francisco offices.  Eventually she became the executive director of the Golden Gate Chapter of the Red Cross.  She was at the helm when the disastrous Loma Prieta earthquake hit the region.  Her leadership in inter-agency coordination and her incorporation of cutting edge technologies in advance of this emergency helped the Chapter to deliver during this troubled time.

Verna and Newell loved to travel.  Typically visits to Europe or Central America involved serious study of associated culture and history. 

In 1991 Verna retired to take care of her beloved husband who was suffering from dementia.  For many years she cared for him with complete devotion and tenderness.

Verna volunteered for nine years with the San Mateo County Commission on Aging, helping seniors with day-to-day issues and available services, and advocating senior issues before governmental agencies.  During this era she also spent countless hours gathering and transcribing family diaries and histories and writing her own memoirs. 

She was very involved with a writers’ group and a poetry group with women from her congregation.  

In all aspects of her life Verna was forthright, dedicated, loyal and honorable.  She was a woman of strength, courage, conviction and love.

Verna was preceded in death by her parents, Thomas K. Greaves and Harriet J. Greaves, by her brother Melvin J Greaves, and by her husband, Newell.  She is survived by her son, Charles Aldous (Alice),  Karen Aldous, and Susan Aldous Strachan (Jim).  She has 4 grandchildren and one great-grandchild and a sister Carol (Wayne) Brown.

Funeral services will be Saturday, July 13, 2019 at 11:00 a.m. at Webb Funeral Home (1005 South 8th East in Preston, ID). A viewing will be held Friday from 6-8 p.m. and Saturday from 10:00 to 10:45 a.m. Interment will be in the Preston Cemetery.  A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on July 20 at the Valparaiso 1st Ward of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1105 Valparaiso Ave, Menlo Park, CA 94025.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to your local American Red Cross Chapter.  Memories and condolences may be shared with the family at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Verna Aldous, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Saturday, July 13, 2019

10:00 - 10:45 am

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Funeral Service

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Starts at 11:00 am

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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