Christopher Creek Loses Longtime Resident To Illness


Last week the community of Christopher Creek lost a sweetheart of a lady, longtime resident Candy Hart.

Just like her name, she was the kindest and sweetest lady you could ever meet. She was the only lady I know that could walk into a room full of people and everyone would turn and look because she was so stunning. Candy was known for her black cowboy hat that was so much a part of her.

She would tease everyone and say that her hair was sewn right to the hat. Candy was born in Worchester, Mass. and moved to the community of Christopher Creek 36 years ago. When she was young, she worked as a wrangler for the stables across from the Landmark. At that time, John Matus was just a bartender at Creekside and every day he would watch for Candy to walk up and have a beverage with him. Many say she was the self-professed social director for Christopher Creek. Her favorite place to go visit was the OW Ranch. She loved it there. Rod Britain said one day they were on a trip to Canyon Creek and there was a small building there and she asked what it was and Rod replied, “It’s a weather station.”

Next time they went there Rod said, “Candy can you stop so I can use the weather station?” Rod just laughed at her innocence. Candy was very instrumental in raising money for all the benefits that went on in the community. If there was a special cause Candy was right there to help.

She worked along with others from day one on the Rusty Cooper Golf Tournament that raised over thousands of dollars in scholarships for Payson High School seniors. After Rusty died, Candy became custodian of his pool cue and went on to win many tournaments.

Years ago Candy, Willene Byrne, Marilyn Pig and myself, and we can’t remember who else, formed a team called The Landmark Sharks. We had these funny jackets that I made and yes, Candy wore hers when we played.

I remember asking Candy to play pool with us and she said she did not know how and I told her neither did I but it is nine-ball and that is slop pool, all you have to do is hit the white ball as hard as you can and hope the nine-ball goes in and you win. When Candy won her first game it was hilarious, she was like a little kid and then every game I hoped she would win just to see how excited she would get.

We would put our jackets on and head over to Tonto Village to play the ladies over there. Those were the days! Candy was also an avid horse lover and all-around animal lover.

For years Candy and Charles Byrne would celebrate their birthdays together at Creekside where Olive made sure they had a cake. There are a lot of memories of Candy and she will be truly missed but never, ever forgotten in this community.

The friends of Candy want to thank her friend Rod Britain for being what we call a true friend. For his caring and generosity. He took Candy and her dog Shadow in and took very good care of her until the end. There are not too many people who would do what he did. But he loved Candy as a best friend and we thank him from the bottom of our hearts for being there for her and helping her in her time of need.

There will be a memorial service for Candy at 11 a.m., Saturday, Feb. 7 at the Christopher Creek Bible Fellowship Church for all to attend.


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