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Information for Marian Mildred LaFountain Mesenbrink
11 April, 1917 - 18 February, 1993
From The Idaho Press Tribune
February, 1993

Contributed by Dennis McIndoo

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Marian Mesenbrink

    Marian Mesenbrink died February 18, 1993, at Mercy Hospice House in Nampa after a courageous fight against cancer.  She was able to live in her own home until February 11, 1993, thanks to the Hospice Program and the personal care of her daughter, Nancy Plumlee.
    At her request, there will be no services.  Arrangements are under the direction of the Alsip Funeral Chapel, Nampa.
    Marian was born April 11, 1917, near Moyie Springs, Idaho, to P.J. and Josephine Richardson LaFountain.  Marian spent her early years in remote logging camps owned by her father.  She was unable to attend school until the age of eight.  However, thanks to the teaching of a favorite bachelor uncle, Ned LaFountain, she was able to catch up to her peers when she finally attended a "real" school.  She graduated from Bonners Ferry High School in 1935 as class valedictorian. Uncle Ned also taught her songs and rhymes in French.
    Marian married R.W. "Dick" Mesenbrink February 1, 1935, in Bonners Ferry.
    Mom remembers traveling for 3 days and 3 nights by train in early 1942, with 4 children under age 5, to join her husband in Southern California where he had a defense related job.  She says the trains were full of soldiers who helped her with the three little girls as her son was less than 6 months old.  Another daughter and son were born during the war years in California.  Mom worked outside the home in office jobs as well as raising her six children, and we were lucky to have Grandma and Grandpa Mesenbrink to help out.
    They later moved to Bakersfield, CA, and Colville, WN, before returning to Bonners Ferry in 1950.
    She was employed as secretary-bookkeeper for Walt Casey at Ford Garage and later at Ace of Clubs in Bonners Ferry.  In 1954, she went to work for Boundary County Auditor's Office.  Marian, a life-long Democrat, was elected to the position of Boundary County Auditor and served in that position for over 20 years, being re-elected every four years.
    In 1977, she was asked to come to Boise to work for Majorie Ruth Moon in the State Treasurer's Office.  She was flattered that anyone would want to employ her as she was over 60 years old.  It was quite an adventure for her and Dick, who had retired several years previously, to sell their home and leave family and friends after 27 years and begin a new life in southern Idaho.
    In 1979, Marian retired for good.  They purchased a mobile home behind their daughter Kay's house in Nampa.  They really enjoyed their retirement years, traveling and wintering in Nevada with many trips to family reunions and to see their "scattered" children, and of course trips back “home" to Bonners Ferry.  Dick grew a huge garden and they both enjoyed canning, freezing and jam and jelly making.
    In 1986, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in Nampa and were so proud that all their living children and grandchildren, except Darren who was in the Navy, were able to attend, as well as many friends and other relatives including Dick's brother and 3 sisters.
    Her husband of 51 years died in October 1987 at home in Nampa.  Marian is survived by four daughters, Kay and Jerry Moorhead of Caldwell, Nancy Plumlee of Nampa, Lynne Derr of Walnut Creek, CA, and Jeannie and Jim Littleton of Spokane, WA; 1 son, James "Jim" Mesenbiink and wife, Bernice of Nampa.  She is also survived by 15 grandchildren, Julie (Moorhead) and husband Earl Wangelin of Nampa, Jody and wife, Tina Moorhead of Caldwell, Jay Moorhead of San Francisco, CA, Terry (Plumlee) and Kelly Woodward of Spokane, Jim and wife, Kelli-Marie Plumlee of Spokane, Shellie Plumlee - or Portland, OR, and Mike Plurnlee of Spokane, Darren Derr of Clovis, CA, Christine (Derr) and husband, Eric Strand of Oakland, CA, Shawn and wife, Diane Mesenbrink of Idaho Falls, Richard Mesenbrink of Caldwell, Vince Littleton of San Francisco, CA, Stacie (Littleton) and husband, Doug Rice of Spokane, Tony and wife, Jane Mesenbrink of San Antonio, TX, and April Mesenbrink of Nampa.
    She is also survived by 13 great-grandchildren who called her Gi-Gi; Timmy, Danny and Kaylee Wangelin, children of Julie and Earl; Joey, Allie and Veronica Moorhead, children of Jody and Tina; Nathan and Jessica Woodward, children of Terry and Kelly; Gary and Ian Plumlee, children of Jim and Kelli-Marie; Shawnelle and Melissa Mesenbrink, daughters of Shawn and by Michelle Mesenbrink, daughter of Tony and Jane.  Marian is also survived by one brother, Kenneth LaFountain of Coeur d'Alene; a cousin, Dorothea LaFountain Mesenbrink of Moyie Springs; as well as numerous nieces, nephews and cousins, including a very special niece Delores "Done" and husband, Gene Baker of Bonners Ferry, and their children Toni, David and Sherrie.
    Besides her husband, Dick, she was preceded in death by a beloved son, R.W. "Dick" Mesenbrink Jr.; her parents; 1 sister, Viola Kestler; and 1 son-in-law, Rex Plumlee; as well as numerous cousins, nieces and nephews.
    Memorials may be made in Marian's name to Mercy Hospice House, c/o Hospice Office, 111 3rd Street So., Nampa, ID 83651.

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