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Rosemary Hill

September 26, 1930 ~ November 3, 2018 (age 88)
Rosemary Hill, 88, of Boise, died at home on November 3, 2018, surrounded by family, following an extended illness. She was born on September 26, 1930, in Salt Lake City, Utah, the second of two children of Edward John and Gladys Lucille Hilton. Rosemary was born with congenital hip dysplasia and could not walk, requiring doctors to make hip sockets by surgery, manipulation and traction. That agonizing process began when she was only two years old, while she remained in a cast from her knees to mid-waist for two years, but ultimately allowed her to walk. The experience defined her personality and was the beginning of a powerful resolve that earned her the nickname "Iron Lady" later in life. Her father died in 1931. A few years later, her mother married Leo J. Foley, who was Rosemary's loving father well into her adult life. She and her older brother Ted were both brilliant children. She skipped two grades and graduated from East High School in Salt Lake at the age of 16. She immediately enrolled at University of Utah, graduating four years later with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Education. She met Jay Hill in college (who had recently served in the Navy's submarine service fighting the Japanese during World War II), and they were married in 1951. They moved to Boise where Jay started his business career. They had four children between 1953 and 1960. Rosemary was a beautiful woman with many gifts. She developed her singing and musical talents while raising those four energetic kids, appearing in numerous musical productions in the Boise area, including The Sound of Music, Camelot, Show Boat, The Music Man and other favorites of the time. She and Jay were also members of "The Showtimers," a group of highly talented singers who performed all around the State of Idaho. She appeared in many Boise Music Week productions and was a loyal supporter until she died. Her soprano voice was absolutely amazing and dazzled anyone who was lucky enough to hear her sing, including friends of her kids who would come to the Hill home after school while she was practicing. She instilled a love of music in all of her kids and grandkids. She spent many hours volunteering for community efforts, including Boise Junior League, Boise Public Library, Boise Philharmonic, fundraising for the Morrison Center, and many other worthy causes. Her social calendar was always full, and she and Jay enjoyed the fellowship of numerous wonderful friends. She was a lifelong member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and married Jay in the Salt Lake City Temple five years after their civil marriage. She and Jay were charter members of the Crane Creek Country Club. They also traveled extensively throughout the world, especially after Jay sold his business and "retired" at the enviable age of 45. As she grew older, the effects of the congenital hip dysplasia and its aggressive treatment started to take their toll. She had two hip replacements and two knee replacements later in life, the final knee replacement leading to a severe infection and the amputation of her left leg in 2016. She also suffered a stroke. Despite those challenges, she remained the "Iron Lady" and was as feisty as ever. A few years after Jay died, she met Dr. Gene Rufi, a retired OB-GYN, and they formed a wonderful companionship until he died earlier this year. He was a gentle and wonderful man who gave her hope. Rosemary is survived by her three sons, Pete (Pam) of Spokane, Randy (Elizabeth) of Boise, and Ted (Heidi) of Boise, nine grandchildren (Katie, Stephanie, Dani, Shannon, Jennica, David, Haley, Olivia and Elliott), three great-grandchildren (Dominic, Nick and Zoe), and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. She was preceded in death by her husband (Jay Hill), her parents (Edward John and Gladys Hilton and stepfather Leo Foley), her brother (Ted Hilton), her daughter (Shauna Hill Rand), her granddaughter (Shauna Hill) and her grandson (Matt Hill). The Hill family wishes to express its great appreciation for the outstanding care and gracious demeanor of the entire staff at Garnet Place and at Lighthouse Hospice during Rosemary's final days. She also enjoyed her final years living among friends at Touchmark's Meadow Lake Village.

A viewing for friends will be held on Monday, November 12, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., at Relyea Funeral Chapel, 318 N. Latah St., Boise. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, November 13, 2018, at 11 a.m., at the LDS Chapel, 11918 W. Ustick Rd., Boise (near the corner of Ustick and Cloverdale). A viewing will be held from 10 a.m. until 10:45 a.m. at the church prior to the services. Immediately following the services, everyone is invited for refreshments and a time to visit at the church. A private family grave dedication will be held later at Dry Creek Cemetery, where Rosemary will be buried next to her beloved husband, Jay, daughter, Shauna, and grandson, Matt. Services are under the direction of Relyea Funeral Chapel. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to your favorite charity.
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