Our beloved and beautiful mother, Charlotte Lorene Ausman, passed away at age 93 in Lewiston on Tuesday, July 23, 2019.
Mom was born in Ione, Ore., Sept. 3, 1925, to Amy and Elisha Sperry. She lived in Ione with her parents and older sister Eileen until her junior year of high school. At that time, she moved to Asotin with her mother, who had taken a teaching job at Asotin High School. There Mom met and fell in love with our father, Dean Ausman.
After graduating from Asotin High School in 1944 while Dad served in the U.S. Navy, Mom moved to Portland, Ore., to live with her great-aunt and work at the Swan Island shipyard, building oil tanker ships to support the troops. After the war, everyone at the shipyard was given a pink slip because their war efforts were no longer needed. Mom then worked as a long-distance telephone operator in Portland. She fondly recalled that when the circuits were busy, she rerouted calls for boys coming back from overseas.
Mom and Dad were married in Seattle on Dec. 24, 1945, while Dad was stationed in Bremerton. She worked briefly as an elevator operator at a department store there until Dad was discharged. They then moved back to Asotin, where they raised their four daughters. Mom once said that she and Dad had a lot of fun raising their girls and would gladly do it all over again.
Mom worked as Asotin County deputy clerk for 10 years, retiring in August 1972. She is a past president of the Bryden Canyon Ladies Association and the Lewiston Country Club Ladies Association.
Mom and Dad enjoyed many years of golfing and traveling throughout the United States. For 25 years, Mom and Dad enjoyed spending time at their property along the St. Joe River near St. Maries with their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Each summer, Mom was always the first family member to go swimming in the river.
The love of her life, her husband of 72 years, died Feb. 17, 2018. She missed him every day. She was also preceded in death by her parents, sister and brothers-in-law, Elden Padberg, Gary Ausman, Dexter Ausman and Daryl Smith.
Mom adored her family and leaves many loving memories to be cherished by her four daughters, Chris (Larry) Wilson, Deanne (Steve) Hawks, Jean (Jamie) Howlett and Joan (Glenn) Doty; and her sisters-in-law, Nickie Jo (Bill) Broyles and LaDoris Smith. In addition, “Meme” leaves behind seven grandchildren, 18 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandson, along with many nieces and nephews and their families.
Special thanks for the care Mom received from the staff at Royal Plaza Assisted Living and from the staff at Golden Girls Residential Care, where she moved shortly after Dad’s death. You made her feel safe in a very difficult time.
We will miss her as we miss Dad — deeply and for the rest of our lives — but take great solace in the fact that Mom and Dad are reunited.
A graveside service will be held for Mom and Dad at 10 a.m. Aug. 10 at Vineland Cemetery.