Norma Tilton, age 85, died on Saturday, May 4, 2019, at the Richmond Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in Richmond, Kansas.
Norma Delight Thompson was born on August 25, 1933, in Anderson County, Kansas, the first of two daughters to Jesse Fremont Thompson and Ruth Belle (Cass) Thompson. Norma lived the majority of her life in Kansas, spending most of her childhood and school years in Welda, Kansas. In the mid-1960’s, Norma lived for a time in Castle Rock, Colorado, where she trained to become a cosmetologist and enjoyed living in the mountains. She returned to Kansas to become a full time hair stylist in the 1970’s, working in a salon in the town square of Garnett, before eventually opening her own salon in Garnett called Professional Beauty.
She retired and spent her days caring for her mother, Ruth, and enjoyed times with her family and her grandchildren, great grandchildren, her beloved horses, and pets.
Norma stayed close to her beginnings when she returned from Colorado, living in Greeley and Colony, before moving with her mother to a farm in Lone Elm, where they resided for many years. Norma’s recurrent health issues necessitated her leaving the farm for good, and she moved into long term care at the Richmond Healthcare facility in July of 2017.
Norma was talented, hardworking, and shared a lifelong passion for horses with her sister throughout their lives together, and she passed that passion down to her sons and grandchildren. She dedicated her entire life to her sons, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and to her parents. She loved horseback riding, going to rodeos and bull riding, as well as watching them on TV. She was an avid book reader, particularly enjoying Western novels.
She was a wonderful cook and candy maker, and possessed a genuine talent for painting on canvas, scenic landscapes on large metal saws, and painting designs on baby quilts she sewed and gave as gifts. Norma enjoyed ceramic making, particularly outside ceramic décor, such as fawns, gnomes, and such. She was gifted with the art of crochet. She crocheted countless beautiful afghans over her lifetime and enjoyed giving them to family and friends. At the age of 81, Norma set out to crochet a gift of a beautiful large afghan for each of her grandchildren and great nephews. They are treasured final gifts she made with love, a task made more difficult with increasing vision issues, but she determinedly finished them all, except for her last project attempt, a baby afghan for her niece’s first grandchild, which she regretted being unable to see well enough to complete. Sadly, her eye issues ended her ability to spend her time enjoying her hobbies the last 3 years of her life. Norma was so well loved at her nursing facility; she badgered them long enough to succeed at getting a tiny dog she named Lucky as a house pet for the residents at the nursing home to love on and Lucky could frequently be found on Norma’s lap, or sleeping in bed with her. Not many could resist Norma’s determination and charm when she set out to get what she wanted.
Preceding her in death were her parents, Jesse Thompson in 1992, and Ruth Huggins, in 2006; her step-father, Glenn Huggins in 1996; her sister, Virginia “Ginny” Miller, in 2005; brother-in-law, Gerald Miller, in 2007; nephews, Randy Miller in 1978, and Gerald “Gerry” Miller in 2005.
Norma is survived by her sons, Gene Duryee Hunsaker and Danny Tilton; five grandchildren, Jesse Tilton, Thomas Tilton, Jimmy Tilton, Ivy Tilton, and Dustie Wilson; seven great grandchildren, Kiera Tilton, Phoenix Tilton, Sheperd Tilton, Daphne Tilton, Landon, Addison, and Reagan; her niece, Cindy Lowe and husband Kenneth; Travis and Taylor Lowe, Kenneth “Cody” Lowe, Colton, Caitlin and Leighton Lowe, Chance Lowe, and Gerry’s daughter, Randi Miller.
Norma had the biggest heart of gold and she will be greatly missed by her family and friends.
A memorial service will be held at 10:30 AM on Saturday, May 18, 2019, at the Feuerborn Family Funeral Service Chapel in Garnett, Kansas. Inurnment will follow in the Welda Cemetery. Condolences may be left for the family at www.feuerbornfuneral.com