May 16, 1931-Dec. 11, 2009
ST. FRANCIS -- Lillian Leona Anderson was born on May 16, 1931, to Fredrick and Virginia Sass at the Sass Family Homestead 21 miles northwest of St. Francis, Kan., and left this world to meet her heavenly Father on Dec. 11, 2009, at the Good Samaritan Village in St. Francis, Kan.
On Feb. 1, 1949, Lillian was united in marriage to Norvin Anderson. Three children were born to this union, Larry, Suzanne and Cynthia. Lillian and Norvin worked for the Good Samaritan Village in St. Francis for the first several years of their marriage and then moved to the Sass Homestead where they farmed and started a dairy.
In the mid-to-late 1960s, Lillian went to work at the cafeteria at the St. Francis High School. She loved being around the young people but sometimes felt a little embarrassment from the pranks that her son played at school.
Lillian went back to work at the Good Samaritan Village as a CNA. She had a special place in her heart for the elderly residents and they always knew that Lillian would take time to give them a hug and speak words of kindness to them. She provided sincere love and comfort in the final days of many of the residents' lives.
She trained in Denver to provide in home dialysis treatment in the 1980s. She had a special bond with each of her patients as she spent 12 hours of uninterrupted, one-on-one time with each of them each week. After several years she didn't have the heart to continue with this profession as it marked the final days of each patient. Lillian went back to work as a care provider at St. Francis Community Hospital. She said that it was a welcome change to see people recover and go home. It was a rewarding time for her.
Lillian loved to travel and relished each trip and looked on it as an adventure.
After all the kids left home, Lillian and Norvin bought a team of Persian horses. They had a freight wagon restored and proudly drove the team through many parades and when weather permitted, they used the team and wagon for Christmas caroling.
Lillian was a devout Christian and her faith sustained her through good times and bad. She loved reading the Bible and Christian-based books and listening to and singing Christian music.
She had her faith to help her through the death of her firstborn grandchild, Shane Anderson in 1990. Her strength helped her entire family deal with the heartbreaking times.
One of the highlights in Lillian's life was being present at the delivery of her first great-grandchild, Sequoya. What a joyful experience for her.
All of you that knew Lillian well can see that mischievous twinkle in her blue eyes. When you saw the twinkle you would watch out, as you knew she was up to something. She taught every one of her grandchildren to twist a tissue tightly into a sphere and sneak up on Norvin and tickle the inside of his ear. Norvin would yell and Lillian and the grandchildren would laugh. She would wrestle with her grandchildren and play like one of the kids. If the parents would scold the children, they would always say, "Grandma started it!", which Grandma always did. She bounced each one of them on her knees and sang "Gently Brays the Donkey on His Way to Town." All of the grandchildren could bray like a donkey by the time they were 18 months old.
Lillian was preceded in death by her parents, Fred and Ginny Sass; her father-in-law, Justice Anderson; her mother-in-law, Ethel Anderson; her grandson, Shane Anderson; her brother, Pete Sass; her brother-in-law, Warren Clemans; and her sister-in-law, Velada Clemans.
Lillian leaves to mourn her husband of 60 years, Norvin Anderson; her son, Larry and his wife, Kayla of McCook, Neb.; daughter Sue and husband, Dave Schneider of Anchorage, Alaska; daughter, Cindy and husband, Gary Doke of Wray, Colo.; her grandchildren, Jon Schneider, Cassidy Schneider, Tyler Doke, Clayton Doke, Kaytlyn Doke, and Jessee Anderson and wife, Sara. She also leaves her great-grandchildren, Sequoya Schneider, Faron Schneider, Isaac Anderson, Justice Lytle, Christopher Doke, Olivia Doke and Jasmine Shalk; her sister, Marjorie Carlson and husband, Evertt; sister, Corrine Ficken and husband, Harvey; sister-in-law, Phyllis Sass; brothers- and sisters-in-law, Norris and Doris Anderson and Chloras and Ferdinand Krien.
Lillian suffered from the ravages of Alzheimer's disease for the past several years so we ask that you do not grieve her death but celebrate her life. Instead of tears, close your eyes and imagine all of the wonderful candies that she made each Christmas, the way her eyes would light up each time she saw a baby, and that mischievous sparkle in her blue eyes. Cherish those memories and smile, for she is at peace.
Goodbye until we see you in Heaven, Lillian. We love you and we will miss you.
Services were held Dec. 14, 2009, at the First Baptist Church in St. Francis, Kan. The officiant was Pastor J.W. Glidewell. Burial was at the St. Francis Cemetery.