CONNELL—Laura Ann Fritsch Connell, 104, of Florence, passed away July 5, 2017.

Laura was born April 13, 1913, to Anton and Katherine Fritsch in Wabeno, Wisc, and was one of 12 children.

She graduated from nursing school in 1935 as a registered nurse and moved to Oregon, where she worked at the hospital as an RN in Hillsboro.

She met and married Thomas R. Connell in 1936. They moved to the Connell family century farm where they raised their three children.

In 1977, they sold the family century farm and moved into Hillsboro.

Retirement gave them time to enjoy some cruises and visit family. Laura enjoyed playing cards, knitting, crocheting and needlepoint. Then she discovered beadlepoint — like needlepoint, but instead of using yarn, seed beads (the tiny beads) are used. Her very first picture was a large jungle scene of exotic birds. It took her a year to complete it. It was so much fun she continued right on making more.

After Tom died in 1993, Laura moved to Florence to be near her youngest son, Bill, who had just retired.

She enjoyed many trips around the Florence area with Bill and his wife, Sandy. She also loved numerous visits from her family.

Laura celebrated many milestone birthdays surrounded by friends and family from all over, the last one being her 104th, which was featured in the Siuslaw News, which visiting her at Elderberry, where she lived and was cared for.

She was preceded in death by her 11 brothers and sisters; husband Thomas; son William; great-granddaughter Talia; and great-grandson Layton.

She is survived by her son Thomas R. Connell Jr., of Woodburn; daughter Judith Powers of Monmouth; nine grandchildren, and many great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

She was the matriarch of the family and enriched all our lives with her love and knowledge.

Graveside remembrance service will be held Aug. 12, at 11 a.m., at Tualatin Plain Presbyterian Cemetery (Old Scotch Church Cemetery), in Hillsboro.


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