We are gathered here today in the memory of our mother, Betty Toomer, so that together we may share our joy in the gift that her life was to us. Betty was 87 when she passed away unexpectedly on December 3rd. It’s hard to say goodbye. We wish that we had more time, to see her smile and hear her laugh. She has left the legacy of her love and strength. The ways she touched our lives will remain in our hearts.
One of the most important things in Betty’s life was her family. She came from a large family that was full of love and joy even through the struggles of the depression. She was the youngest of 9 children and was raised on a farm in Michigan, and later in California. Her mother was a resourceful woman that helped keep her family together and thriving through very difficult times. As a result, our own mother was a very independent, capable woman who handled every crisis (and they were plentiful) with a sense of calm and patience. She was the rock we all clung to when the going got rough.
In 1957, Betty married the love of her life, Ron Toomer. They were blessed with 4 children: Greg, Carol, Gary and Chris. Their love for each other created a home full of love, laughter, and memorable times for everyone. She was a stay at home Mom who spent years driving kids to swim practice, Boy Scouts and music lessons. We had so many adventures it’s hard to choose which stands out the most. Vacations were definitely a highlight of our childhood. We either went to Southern California to see Grandma and her family, or we went to the mountains. We made many trips to amusement parks, national parks, and Donner Lake. Our mother had a great sense of humor and could laugh at just about anything. Sitting at dinner one night in the mountains, she looked out the window and said “It looks like there’s a camel in that tree.” My Dad said, “Betty, you’ve had too much wine!” We laughed about that all week. Another time, Carol fell through the chair at the dinner table and we all burst into laughter. My dad was worried that she had been injured and left the table saying, “Quit being so stupid.” Of course, we laughed until we cried. We still laugh about that incident. So many great memories and so much laughter!
Our parents were also very crafty and great cooks. We spent many Christmases making ornaments, cookies and fudge. Another one of her favorite things was bowling. She was in a league that bowled every Wednesday. The Wednesday before she passed, she bowled 140. She was amazing at 87, still going strong and doing her thing.
Our mother instilled in all of us morals, values and a strong sense of family. She came from a large family where they always helped each other and she expected us to be the same. She did not tolerate any disrespect toward her and she treated all of us with respect. She was a very kind person who believed in helping others.
She was never strict and was pretty much okay with anything as long as no one got hurt and we didn’t burn the house down. She was always there when we needed her. When the grandchildren came along, she was so thrilled. She babysat, went to all the school programs they were in, and helped wherever possible. They will miss her sweet smile and loving words. Mom is survived by 4 children, 9 grandchildren, and a great-granddaughter, all of whom she cherished. Our Mom will always be remembered for her caring heart, great sense of humor and the love of family.
We know that her life was full and she touched the lives of many people. We believe the world was a better place because she was in it. We will remember the lessons she taught and the love and joy she shared with everyone she met.
We would like to thank you all for coming here today and being a bright spot in the life of our beloved mother.