Ingeborg Pendley passed away peacefully on August 22, 2020 in the way she had wished for: in her sleep and at her home of 55 years in Atascadero.
Inge, as most knew her, was born on January 15, 1930 in Friedland, Czechoslovakia to her parents Gertrud Matzig and Kurt Görner. After World War II, Inge’s family were forced to move to Germany. Inge then bravely escaped East Germany with her mother and brother Kurt, crossing a forest during the night, to settle near Frankfurt, Germany.
Inge moved to the USA in 1958, and for a short while lived in Oklahoma and Illinois. She found her true home Atascadero in 1961. She was a beloved part of the community since when phone numbers were four digits long and there was not a single stoplight in town. She witnessed incredible growth and change in SLO county. Inge herself continually grew and changed with the times, yet always remained a dedicated and loving mother and grandmother.
Inge held many jobs and delighted in telling people she was a welder for many years. She worked hard for everything she had. She collected cans and bottles to buy her first car, after receiving her first drivers’ license in her 40s. She became a naturalized citizen in her 30s. We learned so much from her about being a good person.
Inge never had much but was always generous with what she did have. Be it loaning money to people in need, allowing kids and grandkids to use the middle bedroom or her car for many months at a time, or the cash or lottery tickets that every grandkid could count on for birthdays and Christmas well into adulthood.
Inge’s house was more than just her home. It has been the center of our family for nearly six decades. Although many have moved away for a time or permanently, there was always a magnetic draw back to see her, with nearly 40 people somehow fitting in her little house for birthday celebrations and holidays.
Inge loved to dance. To the twist in the 1960s, teaching us the waltz before our first sock hop in the 1970s, and swinging to country music. She danced at every event with music. Her last dance was with family at great-granddaughter Emily’s sweet 16 birthday celebration in November 2019.
Inge was well-known for her famous home-made french fries, potato salad and anything made with vinegar. She experienced hunger during WWII, and never wasted food. Even feeding stray animals to avoid throwing food away.
Inge made many life-long friends. She tolerated the Dodgers to watch many games with Agnes Rainwater. She spent many happy hours hiking and traveling with Gale Semon and Linda LaRue.
Although Inge’s bones were brittle, her spirit and love of life were very strong. She was the toughest person most of us have ever known. She worked extremely hard to come back from injury after injury, spending more time at the gym and in the pool than people a quarter her age.
Inge proudly displayed a “sour kraut” plaque alongside many photos of her family. But behind her occasionally cantankerous and ornery façade, she always had an incredible amount of love for the many people in her life. Although she didn’t use it frequently, when she did, her smile could light up a room.
Those who knew and loved her will miss that smile. But not nearly as much as we will miss the amazing woman behind it!!
Inge is survived by her remaining children; Brigitte Fowler, Linda Persons (Larry), Thomas Pendley, and Robin Kurt Pendley (Jodi). Her daughter Peggy Pendley passed away in 1994. She had eight grandchildren: Eric, Alice, Melissa, Randy, Breanna, Tyler, Rebecca, and Mitchell; ten great-grandchildren: Mercedes, Victoria, Emily, Nicholas, Joshua, Tobin, Nolan, Skylynn Ingeborg, Kaycee, and Steven; and a great-great-grandchild: Zohanna.
We want to thank Rob and Jodi for ensuring Inge could remain at home during her final days. Jodi’s care and excellent cooking merit special appreciation, and Inge considered you her daughter.
Many thanks to Dr. Mooney for his many years treating Inge’s numerous fractures, to Dr. Jardini and his staff in Templeton for years of kind care, and to Hospice for guiding us during her final journey. Inge suffered a massive stroke in November 2019. She was proud of her stroke recovery, made possible by excellent stroke teams at Twin Cities and Sierra Vista, where she had a thrombectomy, and the Acute Rehab Center in Arroyo Grande. Inge’s thrombectomy experience was featured in a news article that she kept by her favorite chair to show her visitors.
With the current challenging situations in California, there will not be a public service at this time. Inge’s family is planning a public celebration of her life during the season she loved the most, Fall.