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Tribute to Mother

Updated on August 27, 2016
elayne001 profile image

Ruth Kongaika was born in the Rocky Mountains and has lived most of her life in the South Pacific. She travels, gardens and writes.

Mom (personal photo)
Mom (personal photo)

Although my mother passed away in 2007, each August reminds me of her. She was a beautiful lady who went through many struggles in life. Mom (as I called her), left this earth too early. She enjoyed some good times, but her health was always an issue.

My time with her was limited since I moved thousands of miles away from where I grew up. It was sad to see her became frail and lose her equilibrium when I visited. My Dad would carry her up and down the stairs of their beautiful home. She choked easily on food. He lovingly cared for her without complaint.

I was not totally aware of the sad state of affairs, until I got a call one day that she had passed away. I was in shock. So was every one else. She had been taken to the hospital, but didn't come out alive. Dad still cries when he speaks of her.

Dad (Personal photo)
Dad (Personal photo)

Sanpete County, Utah

Both of my parents came from very small towns. In fact these two Sanpete County kids grew up only twelve miles apart, Carol (Mom) in Moroni and Bob (Dad) in Fairview, but they didn't know each other until Bob returned from the Air Corps after WWII. At that time there was a high school in Moroni and one in Mt. Pleasant where Bob had graduated. Since then the schools have been consolidated.

Bob was going to BYU in Provo and came home to take an old friend and former classmate to a dance in Moroni, which was famous in the county for its great dance band, The Revelers. By chance this was Carol's Junior Prom, and Bob took special notice of the pretty blonde in the blue formal. She was his dream girl and he told his Mom about her. But, this was February and he had to wait until another dance in July for an opportunity to meet her again.That night he saw Carol sitting on the sidelines with other girls and asked her for a dance, afterwhich she somewhat reluctantly accepted.

Actually, Carol had a boyfriend that was away herding sheep, and she had come to the dance with a girlfriend. Her parents were watching the dance over the fence because this was Joyland, an open air dance floor across the street from the Bungalow where he had first seen her. Since not too much happened in this little town, youth and parents alike were interested. Bob asked Carol to go to the dance two weeks later, and it was at that time that he met her family.

At the dance Bob also met her boyfriend, the tall blonde handsome captain of the basketball team, a bit of a challenge. But, Bob had the advantage of being older. After a few weeks of dating on alternate weekends, Bob asked her to be his steady date. He also had a little help from Carol's mother who always called him her favorite son-in law. (Carol was an only daughter).

A
moroni, Utah:
Moroni, UT 84646, USA

get directions

This is where my mother was raised - Moroni, Utah in Sanpete County, Utah. They raise turkeys in this area.

Mom and her brothers (personal photos)
Mom and her brothers (personal photos)

Love Songs of the Forties

Mom and Dad on their 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration in Orem, Utah (personal photo)
Mom and Dad on their 50th Wedding Anniversary celebration in Orem, Utah (personal photo)
Mom and one of her grandchildren (Personal photo).
Mom and one of her grandchildren (Personal photo).

Engagement and Marriage

At this time Bob was working in Vernal and Carol was in her senior year of High School. Bob moved to Heber City so he could visit her more often, and on her birthday in August, they were engaged. On March 8, 1948 they were married in the Manti Temple, and first lived in Heber City and then later moved to Fairview. In 1956, they moved to Orem, and after owning two other small homes, they lived in a house that Bob built in 1972-73.

Children

Eventually the couple had four children, Kirk who is an Internist in Utah, Ruth, who works at BYU-Hawaii, Janet, who is a special needs technician in Spanish Fork, Utah, and Shauna, who became a nurse. The family continues to grow with many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Mom, in my opinion, was the best pie crust maker, and she made it look so easy. She also kept an immaculately organized home. She was a worrier, and could have been quite wealthy if she had been paid to worry for others. She took up painting ceramics for a hobby and seemed happiest doing that and baking.

Mom struggled for years with her weight (probably because she baked such yummy pastries) and yo-yo dieted. She became diabetic towards the later part of her life, and lost much of her weight. That is when she started looking so frail. I remember her telling me that she had rheumatic fever when she was younger, which may have affected her heart.

She had sacrificed much to take care of her mother in law as well as her own mother as they declined before passing away. Both of them lived into their 90s, but mother died in her 70s.

My mother and her parents (me and my daughter) four generations (personal photos)
My mother and her parents (me and my daughter) four generations (personal photos)
Sisters (Mom's three daughters).
Sisters (Mom's three daughters).

Service

Carol had a beautiful soprano voice and shared her talent at many events including church meetings, parties, and funerals. Two of her daughters share that gift.


Bob and Carol served an LDS mission in the Wisconsin Milwaukee Mission, traveled to the South Pacific several times to visit their daughter (that's me) in Hawaii, visited twenty-six LDS temples, and made many other trips around the USA. They loved traveling together and visited several LDS Church historical sites from Vermont to Utah. They were both very active in LDS church callings.

Our family (personal photo)
Our family (personal photo)

August



Thinking about you at this time, Mom, and hope you are happy with Grandma and Grandpa and all our loved ones who have passed on. We all miss and love you!

A grand legacy (only some of the grandchildren).
A grand legacy (only some of the grandchildren).

Comments

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  • DDE profile image

    Devika Primić 

    5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

    A wonderful tribute and such a lovely family

  • Jackie Lynnley profile image

    Jackie Lynnley 

    5 years ago from The Beautiful South

    Thank you for sharing, my mother has passed away too 3 years ago and I always publish a poem for her on her birthday here at Hp. There is no replacing a mother. I can't wait to see mine again.

  • LianaK profile image

    LianaK 

    5 years ago

    Love this! Thank you for the great reminder of this beautiful woman. I will forever cherish the memories that I had with her. Love you mom.

  • Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

    Pamela Kinnaird W 

    5 years ago from Maui and Arizona

    Voted up, beautiful and awesome. This is so special. May we all love our dear mothers like you love yours. Sharing.

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