Valerie Paynton Navarro

April 26, 1955 ~ July 4, 2023 (age 68) 68 Years Old


Valerie Paynton Navarro passed away at home with her husband by her side in Tacoma, WA at the age of 68 on July 4, 2023.

She was a beloved wife, mother, grandmother, stepmother, sister, family member and friend.

Her love of Russian, French and other World Languages led to a teaching career and a PhD in Cultural Studies and Second Language Acquisition. She taught in the United States and abroad in Prague, Moscow and Warsaw. Nonetheless, her real passions were theatre and dance. She directed numerous musicals and plays but felt her crowning achievement and greatest gift was the creation of the musical “Lifting You Up”, which she wrote to document and share her cancer journey.

Valerie was born in Seattle to George D. Paynton and Elizabeth E. (Patz) Paynton on April 26, 1955. She was preceded in death by her brother, Franklin W. and both parents. She is survived by her husband and tango partner, Daniel H. Erickson, daughter Mia Navarro (Molly), stepdaughter Alicia Zachary-Erickson (Matt), granddaughter Adaline Wells, sister Ginni Keith (Rick), brother James Paynton (Margie) (and nieces, nephews and cousins on both sides.) For those wishing to leave donations to Ovarian Cancer Research in Valerie’s memory, the family offers the following suggestion:

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