Life will never be the same. Never as sweet. Never as beautiful. Rose Lucy Thomas, 85, passed from this world on Monday morning, August 29th around 5 o’clock am. She is reunited with her husband and fellow thrill-seeker Cecil “Dale” Thomas who passed two years earlier and whom she loved with her entire being.
She had been eaten away the past 10 years or more by Alzheimer’s.- a steady, slow smothering death of the mind, and everything that is dear. She is free of her shell of a body. She won't know pain anymore.
She met Dale in Pueblo, Colorado at a dance for the soldiers. That was the beginning of a 63-year love affair that lasted even through the ravages of Alzheimer’s. Dale loved her so completely that, even after they were separated as she went into a care home, he would look for her around the house and say "Where's Rosie? She's half my medicine." Loving and brilliant, always supportive, and ever so kind and wonderful, she was good to her husband and daughter, Nancy, who said no child could have had a better mother. Rose and Dale waited 15 years for Nancy’s arrival, and after three days of labor that almost killed both mother and baby, no child was ever so loved.
Rose put up with her daughter’s shenanigans and her husband’s perpetual teasing ("Damn you Dale!" was her typical response to her husband’s pranks). Her world revolved around her husband and daughter. Nevertheless she had hobbies and many crafts. She loved reading and history and provided an unspoken net of security for her daughter, one that so few people get to experience in their lifetimes and are the poorer for it. Between her and her husband, they provided their family with a bountiful wealth of love and peace and security.
Although Rose never declared that she was a feminist, her actions said so. She helped her neighbor Sue become a citizen when Sue’s husband was threatening to have her deported. She helped her friend Anne learn how to drive while her husband was on maneuvers so she didn’t have to rely on his good graces to go everywhere. Rose also taught her how to sew pants and that it was ok for a woman to wear pants. (Can you imagine?) She was adventurous and brave. She taught her daughter that a woman could be strong, intelligent, wise, and independent. She followed Dale around the world and endured the wait only a military spouse can know: the ravages of uncertainty about whether your loved one will come home in a body bag or pieces. She was Dale’s equal partner in the Army at a time when the military assumed that wives worked for the military too, even though they never got acknowledged or paid.
She was one in a family with six children, the favorite child of Gaetano and Ignatcia Chimento, born on November 7th, 1930, in Pueblo, Colorado. She attended Bessemer Elementary School, Keating Junior High and graduated from Central High School. She also attended Pueblo Junior College for two years. After marrying Dale, she traveled the world, had many adventures and after retirement enjoyed volunteering with Cecil for the Disabled American Veterans and various other military organizations. She lived life exuberantly and taught her daughter Nancy to do the same. In her memory, don’t vote for Trump.
Funeral services will be held on Thursday September 8, 2016 at 12:00 noon at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery. Family and friends can sign an online memorial guestbook at www.bouldercityfamilymortuary.com