February 16, 1907 – January 13, 2015
The extraordinary life of an amazing woman ended peacefully on January 13, 2015. Norma Kruse was born to Paul & Roxie Wolten on February 16, 1907 in Blaine, Washington. The Wolten & Wilson families were among the original settlers of Blaine, arriving in the 1880s. Norma was the third oldest and last surviving of ten children. Norma married William “Ikey” Kruse on December 29, 1934. In the late 1940s, they purchased forested property in the Birch Point area, which led to many years of enjoyment for their family. Ikey and Norma enjoyed several trips to Denmark to visit his hometown and relatives.
An active, lifetime resident of Blaine, Norma was a member of the Blaine United Church of Christ, Women’s Fellowship, Eastern Star, Blaine Senior Center, The Danish Brotherhood and others. She served as Grand Marshall of the Blaine Fourth of July parade and received the Blaine Builder Award on her 100th birthday.
Norma will be remembered for her gardening ability and love of Blaine basketball. Each year she nurtured 50-year-old begonia bulbs and grew and maintained beautiful flowers. A lifelong Borderite fan, she was a fixture at boys and girls basketball games, following the teams to state tournaments well into her 90s. Norma was a tremendous cook, played a good game of Scrabble, loved music and watching the Seattle Mariners.
Always thinking of others, Norma enjoyed sharing her love of the beach and agate collecting. Anticipating visits of friends and family, she would often “seed the beach” with agates for guests to find. She remained active and lived at her cabin just shy of her 100th birthday. In most recent years, Norma enjoyed friendships and activities as part of assisted living at Stafholt. Her family is grateful for the loving care provided by the staff at Stafholt Assisted Living and Care Center facility.
Norma is survived by her children Dar (Vickie) Kruse, Kathleen Rightmire, and daughter-in-law Sharon (Gene) Luther, all of Blaine; grandchildren Kris (Tracy) Kruse, Mike Kruse, Todd (Kris) Rightmire, Kristi (Mark) Harting, David (Amy) Kruse, and Donald (Melissa) Kruse; 10 great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. Her husband William, son Dale Kruse, son-in-law Dick Rightmire, great granddaughter Krystal Star Kruse, her nine siblings, and many dear friends predeceased her.
A memorial service to honor Norma’s life will be Sunday, January 25 at 2:00 p.m. at the Blaine Senior Center, 763 G Street. Those who wish may contribute to Good Samaritan Society-Stafholt, 456 C Street, Blaine, WA 98230 or United Church of Christ, 885 4th St, Blaine, WA 98230.