Charity passed away August 20, 2019, in Lehi, Utah, from cardiac arrest. Throughout her life, Charity excelled at overcoming any obstacle or challenge presented to her. However, the passing of her son Skyler Mair just two days previous, proved to be the stress that her heart could not take.
Charity was born on May 19, 1976, in Salt Lake City, Utah, to Elizabeth Jane Shaffer Longaker and John Douglas Longaker. She was the fifth of eleven children, having three sisters and seven brothers. She graduated from Skyline High School in 1994. It could be said that her writing and project management skills were first displayed there via her involvement in the school newspaper and a creative magazine as well as her role as the student secretary. Her mind was exceptionally balanced, with her creativity expressed through her poetry and her organizational skills in the office. This was not new to her siblings as they were able to see those skills, and poetry, much earlier. With six younger siblings, she had the opportunity to start learning the arts of childcare and home management while she herself was a child. She worked hard at home and at school, always with love as a strong motivator. It would be difficult, if not impossible, to find anyone who did not get along with Charity. She was a peacemaker and a friend to all she met.
Charity put her enormous heart out and married Shane Mair. Together they brought their daughter, Shayna, and son, Skyler, into the world. Although the marriage later ended, Charity and Shane’s friendship flourished as they raised their children. When Charity makes friends, she makes friends forever. Her friendships with Shane and the entire Mair family were no exception as they continued to gather for vacations, holidays, and many other things.
Charity again put her heart out and met Victor Guida. While they were together, they brought their son John-Zander (JZ) into the world. Unfortunately, Charity and Victor also had their struggles, but the two of them remained very good friends and co-parents until the untimely passing of Victor.
Charity’s children were her greatest joys. Although she always had a smile on her face, when you talked about her children, her smile would light up the room. Over the years, she helped her siblings in any way she could. In so doing, she became especially close to her nieces Alecia and Kate and nephews Joe and Jim. Following some familial struggles, Charity opened her home to them as their guardian. Her heart seemed to know no bounds and she loved them as her own. Extending her family was no stretch for Charity. As a teenager, she was very welcoming to her stepmother, Victoria Hixson Longaker, and stepsiblings, Phillip Johnson and AnNicole Johnson Meade. All additions to family were a joy to Charity.
In addition to having an exceptionally fulfilling life at home with her children, including several of the feline and canine persuasion, Charity greatly enjoyed her professional life in the engineering industry. She only briefly attended college. Instead she opted for the school of hard knocks by leaping directly into the workforce. She eagerly started in entry-level positions where she learned and worked extremely hard to hone her skills. Her efforts paid off as she acquired positions of increasing responsibility. This was not just work for Charity. She enjoyed her career and she dearly loved her coworkers and her places of employment. Most recently Charity enjoyed working at Spectrum Engineering Inc. as a marketing manager. Before that, she spent 12 years working for Franson Civil Engineering, where she worked her way up from an engineering assistant to eventually become their marketing coordinator. Before Franson, she worked at DMJM Harris for seven years, where she started as a receptionist and concluded her time there as a project accountant and administrative assistant. Charity gained lifelong friendships from her time at these jobs and others.
Although Charity had a loving heart and a mind that was exceedingly sharp, sometimes other parts of her body left her frustrated with various illnesses and pains. To gain understanding, and occasionally solace and relief, she sought out those people with similar ills on social media. To no great surprise, she made even more close friends there.
Charity was a kind and gentle person. However, these attributes were set aside when she would play volleyball. She greatly enjoyed the sport, occasionally gathering family members for a mostly friendly volleyball match. All her siblings enjoyed playing, so it was a great motivator for family gatherings. When she felt less ambitious and more like relaxing, Charity enjoyed watching movies, listening to music, playing her baby grand piano, reading a good book, or baking some of the best cookies around.
To list all of Charity’s friends and family would be an overwhelming task. However, to mention a few would share much of the influence that helped make Charity the strong, smart, loving woman that so many got to know and love. Charity learned to love from her mother, Elizabeth. She also learned what it meant to put one’s children and family ahead of one’s self. Her older sister Anne, who gave Charity the nickname “Tunie,” has been there with her since birth. They encouraged each other creatively as children through their stories and poems. As adults, they have shared joys and sorrows between their families.
In her teen years, Charity was blessed with a stepmother, Victoria, who loved her and very much helped raise her. Victoria was a constant source of encouragement and took every accomplishment of Charity as a source of joy and pride. Charity’s strength and work ethic were likely learned, if not inherited, from her father, John. Charity watched her father work hard every day to support his family. She learned to push herself every day to make things better for her family.
Shane Mair remained supportive of Charity and all her children as well as her special niece and nephews. Similarly, the entire Mair and Guida families helped confirm Charity’s belief that family relationships can grow and evolve with love and support.
Charity is survived by her daughter Shayna, her son John-Zander (JZ), and her very special nieces Alecia and Kate and nephews Joe and Jim. She is also survived by her father, John (Victoria); her siblings John (Lorie), Matt (Cricket), Adam (Erin), Anne Farabee, Emily (Jarom) Mair, Tom (Liz), Sarah (John) Roberts, Joe, James (Mary), and David; her stepsiblings Phillip Johnson and AnNicole (Justin) Meade; and numerous other nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her mother, Elizabeth, and son, Skyler, who will rejoin her after a very brief separation.
A funeral service will be held on Saturday, August 31, 2019, at noon in the Neffs Canyon Ward, 4176 S. Adonis Dr. (3950 E.), Salt Lake City, Utah. A viewing will be held where friends and family are invited to gather and pay their respects or share memories at the same location on Friday, August 30, 6–8 p.m. and on Saturday, August 31, 10–11:30 a.m. Interment will follow the services at the Holladay Memorial Park Cemetery, 4900 S. Memory Lane, Holladay, Utah (just east of the former Cottonwood Mall). Funeral services and floral arrangements are under the direction of Didericksen Memorial.
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