Tribute for Mary Catherine Tippetts | Relyea Funeral Chapel
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Mary Catherine Tippetts

December 22, 1921 ~ February 20, 2019 (age 97)
Mom always said she came from "good peasant stock." Her parents, Tony Turkovich and Mary Magdalene Vinars' Turkovich, emigrated from Sapjane', Austria (now Croatia). Grandpa emigrated through Ellis Island in 1912, hopping the train from New York City to Tacoma, Washington, for work. Seven years saving money and waiting for WWI to end, he was finally able to return to Austria for his wife. Mom was born December 22, 1921, in Alder, Washington, followed by her brother, Tony, in 1923. Grandma Turkovich passed away when Mom was at the tender age of 14; she then assumed the household duties for the family. Perhaps that is why Mom's hobbies were family and work.

Mom met our Dad, Wayne May Tippetts, while he was serving at Fort Lewis Army Base in Washington State. They met at a dance in Tacoma at the Crescent Ballroom. Grandpa Turkovich wasn't too thrilled with his daughter dating "that soldier boy," but following her baptism in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, they were married January 10, 1942. In 1955, the family was sealed in the Cardston, Alberta, Canada Temple for time and all eternity.

Mom was a great support in Dad's work, which took the family from Washington to Utah, Idaho, Montana, Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota before settling in Boise in January 1962, for the remainder of their years. Mom stayed home with us kids until the early 1960's, when she decided to work outside the home. For a number of years, she was a dental assistant for several area dentists. Following that, she worked for her daughter Wendy in the association management business (insurance agents & surplus line brokers). She was 92 when she resigned because a second stroke took her short-term memory. Mom was an integral part of the business team and loved her position working with, at times, all four daughters. She used to tell us, "don't call me 'Mom,' call me 'Mary,' it's more professional."

Mom served as Relief Society President in our Ward while living in Des Moines, Iowa, and also enjoyed teaching the children (Primary). She enjoyed studying the gospel and lived it daily in the way she treated her fellow man. Mom exhibited and set a high example for her children. She was selfless and compassionate towards all. She and Dad lived on Federal Way near the Union Pacific Railroad Station about 40 years, and it wasn't uncommon to see hitchhikers sitting in the yard eating a delicious lunch prepared by Mom or Dad. She was a kind person and loved people. She taught us how to persevere in times of great difficulty. During the last 5 years, she was cared for by her family and was always grateful, never wanting to be a burden. She was a delight and exhibited a wonderful sense of humor about her short-term memory loss, which made it easier to care for her. And, always, she had to have her purse close by....she said it was her security blanket. She was adamant that, if she died while sleeping, that we apply her lipstick so she wouldn't look like "an old dead lady."

Our deep appreciation is extended to Heart & Home Hospice, who gave our Mom tender, loving care. Preceding Mom in death were husband, Wayne, her parents and two grandsons, Gabriel Luna Tippetts and Scott Tippetts. She is survived by her brother, Tony (Ilene) Turkovich, niece & nephew Tanya and Edward; her children, Diane (Theron) Keys, Larry (Amaryllis) Tippetts, Dan (Sandy) Tippetts, Marlene (Bart) Wheelwright, Wendy (Larry) Tippetts Farnsworth, and Debra Ann; 21 grandchildren and 68 great grandchildren

The funeral service will be Saturday, March 2, 2019, 11:00 am, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 6711 Northview Ave., Boise, Idaho. Viewing 10:00-10:45am preceding the funeral. Gravesite dedication will be at Dry Creek Cemetery immediately following the funeral, where she will be laid to rest between her husband and grandson, Gabriel. In lieu of flowers, please contribute to the Idaho Humane Society or favorite charity.
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