In Memory of our mother Mary Mullins
Mary’s funeral will be held on Friday, December 30, 2016. Her funeral will be a traditional Catholic funeral mass held at St. Thomas More Parish in Lynwood, 6511 176th St SW, Lynnwood, WA 98037. A reception will follow, also at St. Thomas More. We would like to welcome family and friends to celebrate memories of her life with us.
Mary loved painting ceramics and we will have some of the items she painted available for those interested in taking a memento.
Mary passed away on December 13, 2016, due to breathing complications. Fortunately, there was enough time for all of Mary’s surviving children to be with her during her last hours.
Mary Lois Stephens Mullins
February 8, 1945 – December 13, 2016
Mary started her life here on earth in West Palm Beach, FL. She was the second child to parents Charles William “Bill” and Lois Ellen Stephens, while Bill was in the Air Force or back then known as the Army Air Corps. Soon they moved to California where another sibling was born, her sister and best friend Sheila. The family was almost complete, when a number of years later the youngest was born, Tim.
Mary went to Flintridge Parochial School and in her high school yearbook for future dreams and ambitions, Mary had stated that she wanted to be a nurse and to have a big family. She did become a nurse, first a LPN where she did her schooling in Pasadena, CA – She then started her own family with Joseph Frederick in December 1965.
She then married again in 1971 where she had a baby girl Mindy Lynn born in June 1972. Sadly, she was not destined to live long in this world and she passed away December 1972. Life has a way of giving you blessings as she was pregnant again at the time of Mindy’s death and in June 1973, Kevin Richard was born, a very healthy boy. She finally got her little girl in July 1975; Kathleen (Katie) Marie was born. A family of five, though not quite complete – Mary would have twins in January 1978; Jill Lynn and Colleen (CJ) Mindy. A few years later after she felt she had her family, she went back to college, this time at CBC Nursing program in Pasco, WA. With five kids at home she managed to earn straight A’s and graduated in 1983, as a Registered Nurse though during this time while attending nursing school her second marriage came to an end.
Around 1986 Mary decided it was time to move away from the Tri-Cities to a bigger city, so she began getting The Seattle Times for the classifieds looking for nursing jobs in the Seattle area. She found a job at a family clinic on Rainier Ave in South Seattle. She moved a few weeks ahead of the kids, as the kids wanted to finish out the quarter at their current schools -her oldest daughter was adamant about not going back to elementary school…she was in middle school!
Mary enjoyed working at the Providence Rainier Clinic, her co-workers became good friends. after about 10-15 years she moved clinics to the Edmonds Clinic, which was closer to home. Around ’05-’07 time frame, she semi-retired and had hip surgery, first on one side, then another. It wan’t until 2009 that she felt well enough to resume nursing. As it had been a few years, she had to take some refresher courses and renew her nursing license. Once done, she started working at Next Step Pregnancy Center. She enjoyed working again. Of course, dealing with babies to be, made it extra fun.
Her oldest had graduated from Kamiakin High School in 1984, moved to San Diego and then he moved to Maine, eventually he returned to Washington State around 2004
Four of the kids graduated from Shorecrest High School between 1991 and 1996. CJ was the one to stay closer to home after graduation, she finally got more one-on-one time without her twin around, which is why she will say she was Mom’s favorite 🙂 (Running joke between the twins).
After all the kids left home, CJ got Mom her first dog, this dog was Gordito, a chihuahua and yes, this is when the Taco Bell commercials had the Yo queoro Taco Bell dog. She even had a song for him – ask Jill to sing it for you! After Gordito passed away along came Chico, a definite barker, but he loved Mom and was very protective of her.
Mary also found a hobby – and that hobby was Ceramics. she loved to paint ceramics, the glazes, the firing, finding unique green ware and molds. Learning different painting and glaze techniques, we were bound to get something she had painted for Christmas or our birthdays. She also would have some of her wares up for the annual Angalorum auction Denise and Kevin help organize.
During her life Mary was able to celebrate with her parents, their 50th wedding anniversary, her 50th high school reunion, a few family reunions, camping with her kids, along with her sister Sheila and her kids. When Mom moved to Everett to a condo up there, she kind of became the neighborhood grandma, where the kids would stop by and paint.
In 2015 her health deteriorated to the point where it wasn’t safe or practical for her living in her apartment. CJ and Jill discovered The Leopold up in Bellingham, an adult retirement community. It was a bit further away from Kevin and his family and Jill and her family, but closer to CJ and she was looking forward to having Mom closer to her. When Mom felt up to it, she loved to play games with her friends at The Leopold – she had to make sure she had dimes, though! Also, the scooter Jill was able to get her, gave her freedom to get around Bellingham – to appointments, out to dinner, to the YMCA – often it would be her with Chico in the basket getting outside. Our directionally challenged mother got the lay of the neighborhood quickly!
Mom had good days and bad, breathing was such a challenge! It is something most of us take for granted, being able to breath without even thinking about it. It is exhausting to not be able to breath properly, and it caused her heart to work harder to get what oxygen her lungs received through her system. All of which tired her to the point where she was ready to let go. Thankfully all her living kids were there at her bedside letting her know it was alright, she could let go and be at peace. So a little after 8pm on Tuesday, December 13, 2016, Mom was reuniting with her daughter Mindy, her brother Pat and her parents.
Mary is survived by her sister Sheila Knox (Bonnie), brother Tim Stephens (Della) and her children: Joe F Mullins, Kevin Mullins (Denise), Katie Irish (Jeremy), Jill Mullins-Cannon (Laura) and CJ Mullins (Clair).
Her first grandchild was Sierra Nicole (1995), next was Sean Patrick (2004), Lindsay Marie (2006) and Shannon Elizabeth (2010)… In 2014 when Jill got married she got two more grandkids; Natalie (2006) and Zachary (2011).
Mom, you are missed and we love you.