Norma Marie Telquist Chapman

Eulogy for Norma Marie Telquist Chapman

Norma Marie Telquist Chapman was born on December 5, 1925 in Kenmore Washington to Albert E. Telquist and Mary C. Dygert Telquist. She has two brothers from that marriage Robert Gordon and Roy H. Telquist.

Norma’s father passed away when she was very young, but she had memories of sitting on the piano bench with him when she was five years old with her father playing and singing to her. She grew up surrounded by music and carried that with her when her own
family came along.

She learned to swim (the hard way) at age five when a raft she was on came apart about 20 feet from shore at Norma Beach. At that point it was either sink or swim back to shore. She swam (dog paddled). When Norma was about 13 and Roy about 11, they decided the house they were in was not large enough with only one room serving as kitchen, dining room and living room; one bedroom; and a bathroom. With help and supervision from “Grampa” and a couple of others, they added on a bedroom and kitchen with a covered back porch. She and Roy were very pleased with themselves because they had done a lot of the work.

As children they played baseball, picked blackberries, hiked down to the lake to swim, camp. In the book she put together she said “Sometimes we swam at Kenmore Beach…sometimes at the next beach where the big dance hall was but occasionally we
went all the way to the end of the log booms.”

“The end of the log booms was special to us..Sometimes in the summer we would camp there and my mother would walk from there to Lake Forest Park where she could catch a bus to work down by Green Lake. While she was at work we swam and had a great time.
Gramma and Grampa Dygert camped with us and were in charge until Mom came home from work. I remember Grampa nailed wooden boxes high up on a cottonwood tree.

There were doors on the boxes to keep the squirrels out of our food. Cooking on a bonfire and sleeping under the stars made life special..We did not even know we were poor…It seemed to us we owned the whole world…”

Norma attended school in Bothell and went up to the 10th grade when she dropped out of school to go to work.

Many years later, at the age of 49, she went to Everett Community College to take a G.E.D. test. When she went to pick up her test scores, they had a red flag on them. She went to see the head advisor and was asked what she wanted to study. She had no idea at
that time and took a Lifestyle and Career course. She was told she could do anything they had to offer because her scores were the highest they had ever seen at the college for a GED.

Her life’s work would be in the cemetery business. She worked very hard cleaning and restoring cemeteries and in help people find a resting place for their family members.

Norma was an avid reader of many things. She read and reread church books, the writings of the Prophets, and National Geographic. She also read many non-fiction books. She could converse on any topic. She also enjoyed painting, quilting, caring for and being involved in family activities. One of the big projects she took on was to gather information on her family. Norma spent many hours on genealogy putting together family history information for her mother and father’s families. She was still concerned about that when she was in the hospital.

One of her favorite “hobbies” began when she met a lady who offered to teach her to play Bridge. She became fairly good at it and started winning tournaments. She was encouraged to start “getting away to new places to play in tournaments”. During the years she played Bridge she went to Bermuda, Mexico City, New Orleans, Boise, Los Angeles, Portland, Victoria, Vancouver and Seattle according to her own writing. She achieved Life Master in 1985 which she considered a milestone.

Norma started working when she was 15 in a laundry at Greenlake where her mother worked. While she was working in Lake City as a cook, she became engaged to a man who had been in her first grade class. Her future husband came into the café where she
worked and her plan for the future changed.

Her mother, Mary, married Carl Lunn when Norma was about 15. Norma and Roy were blessed with a sister, Ida, and a brother, Charles (Charlie) Lunn. She married Clifford P. Chapman on June 2, 1945. Cliff was in the Coast Guard and they moved many times. In 1946, their first son, Roy, was born. Gilbert (Gibbie) came next in 1949, then Sam in 1950, Stella in 1952, and Richard in 1955.
In late 1950 Cliff and Norma had their first encounter with the missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. To say it wasn’t the greatest first impression would be putting it mildly. Norma was having a “Murphy’s Law” sort of day when the
missionaries knocked and she told them “I am not interested”.

Fortunately for her and Cliff it was not to be the last encounter with them. They met again, under much difference circumstances. There was a family staying with them who had lost their home in a fire on Christmas Eve and Cliff invited them over. The missionaries came to bring some things to the Johnson family and Cliff and Norma opened their door to them. When the Johnsons finally were able to move into their new home, the missionaries continued to visit with the Chapmans and they began the lessons.

They were baptized on July 1, 1951 along with Carol Johnson. Norma had a strong testimony from that time on.

In late summer of 1951 the little family returned from Pipestone, Minnesota to Kenmore, Washington. What a relief to be out of the snow country and back with family and friends.

In June, 1958, Gibbie went swimming in Cottage lake while on an outing with the family and drowned. Norma was devastated; but in the course of her prayers she received the answer “I HAVE CALLED MY SON HOME.”  When Gibbie was buried in the Bothell Pioneer Cemetery next to Norma’s Gramma and Grampa, the cemetery was not being cared for. Norma and her children started to takecare of the family plots by clearing out the brush and garbage. They were paid $100 for their efforts because the cemetery had sold two spaces – the first in about 20 years. Thus began her work with cemetery maintenance. She and her family worked very hard in this business and Richard has taken over the family business at Woodlawn.  Woodlawn Cemetery Bothell Pioneer Cemetery

Norma and Cliff divorced prior to their 25th anniversary and she provided from that time on for her family. They are a close-knit group. Sam passed away in 2005 bringing more grief to Norma, but again her faith, strength and determination sustained her.
She loved getting together with family – birthdays, weddings, family luncheons, anywhere where she was with her immediate and extended family.

She also loved playing Bridge at the Senior Center until she felt she could no longer go. Her physical presence is no longer here, but her spirit lives on and we will feel that when we have family gatherings. She lived a very rewarding, hard-working, fun-filled life.
She passed away on January 11, 2010 at the age of 84 and she will be GREATLY missed.

We love you Mom.
Roy, Stella and Rich.

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