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Spokane, WA
This profile photo is my mom and me at the beach--she is 26 and I am about 18 months. LOVE the joy!! I am a mom of three and a teacher; being a teacher means I have to go back and cut the f-bombs. There were a few. Because Alzheimer's sucks badly. This blog, for nine years now--skipping a few while I was too cheap to buy my domain name-- helps me un-peel and process the endless layers of sad woven with weird and--impossibly--comedy.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

An Obituary as An Act of Love

My dad texted me Wednesday night and asked if there was anything could do. SO I said, please write me an obituary about the beginning of mom's life. But he just wrote the whole thing. This is even more sweet, as my brother mentioned, when you consider that he and my mom have been divorced since 1989.




Lynn O’Connor Fairbanks

         Late Saturday evening, January 14th, Lynn Fairbanks slipped into stillness in the arms of her daughter Lisa at a care facility in Spokane. While in recent years Alzheimer’s disease had ravaged Lynn’s essence, her humor and spirit was often evident.
        

         Born in Missoula in the summer of 1946 to Evelyn Cole and Earl O’Connor, Lynn attended Willard Grade School, and was in the final graduating class of Missoula County High School (1964) – with two years classes each at now Hellgate and Sentinel school buildings. Ever the free spirit and the personification of “cool”, while classmates were captivated by the hits of Elvis and Buddy Holly, she preferred the jazz stylings of Dave Brubeck and Stan Getz.
        
        Following a “fix-up” with Jim Fairbanks, they dated through school. In 1965, Lynn and Jim began their twenty-three year marriage honeymooning in California, and then moving to the Bay Area. As a true child of the “sixties”, Lynn was forever a political and social activist, and advocate for those marginalized.
        
       Lynn worked for the phone company in Oakland as an equipment assignment specialist, while of course, serving as a union rep. Following a ‘walk-out’, she fondly remembered picketing with Lily Tomlin (in character as “Laugh In’s” Ernestine) Lynn gave birth to Lisa in 1969, and shortly after her little family moved to the Monterey Peninsula where son Christopher was born in 1975. They returned to Missoula to be nearer family in 1977. After a short employment with Sears, Lynn settled into a position in the Finance Office at the City of Missoula. Following retirement, she moved to Spokane to be close to her grandchildren.
       
       Her daughter Lisa and husband Mike, their son Alex and daughters Sophia and Isabella Rossi of Spokane; son Christopher Fairbanks of Marina Del Rey and two brothers, Larry and Kurt O’Connor survive Lynn. She is preceded in death by her parents, Earl and Evelyn O’Connor. Lynn has many cousins, aunts and uncles in her extended Cole family in Missoula.
 

Cremation has taken place, and a memorial service will be announced in the coming weeks.

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Thoughtful young me

Thoughtful young me

Seventies chicks

Seventies chicks
Me and my mom Lynn, 1973

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