Starlene Elizabeth (Swayney) Balderas, 42, of 37 River Park Rd., Cullowhee, and a member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee, passed away unexpectedly on Monday, Dec. 29, 2014 at the Med West Harris Hospital in Sylva.
Starlene was the daughter of the late Calvin and Margaret Walkingstick Swayney of Cherokee. She was a homemaker and loving mother.
She is survived by her children, Trista Hernandez, Edna “Sissy” Balderas and Lucy Balderas, all of Cherokee; two uncles, Billie Joe Swayney and Floyd Swayney; aunt, Joyce Swayney; great-aunt, Inez Swayney; one nephew; three nieces and many cousins.
She was preceded in death by her grandpa, Leonard Swayney; brother, Leonard “Spud” Swayney; uncle, Richard Walkingstick.
Starlene had a visitation at the Straight Fork Baptist church from on Tuesday, Dec. 30 followed by a funeral on Wednesday, Dec. 31 at the church as well. The service was conducted by Rev. Charles Ray Ball and an immediate burial took place in the Swayney Family Cemetery along the Big Cove loop. Pall bearers were among the cousins and friends.
Long House Funeral Home assisted in the final arrangements.