Aldeane Louise "Deanne" Adams
1927 - 2020
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October 8, 1927 ˜ July 12, 2020

On July 12th our strong, independent, compassionate Mom passed peacefully from this world. Deanne was born on October 8, 1927 to Abraham and Rose Zahler, the third of four children. She grew up in the small Swiss immigrant community of Helvetia, OR on the family farm. Her two-mile walk to the 2 room school she attended was a long, often rainy one over meadows and fields. Being a child with great curiosity, and a love of learning, she excelled in school and graduated from Beaverton High School at age 16.
Following graduation, Mom joined the War effort by training as a welder. She worked at Kaiser Shipbuilding’s Vancouver yard, attaching interior bulkheads to Casablanca-class escort carriers.
In 1945, she married Dale W. Adams, whom she was married to until his death in 2007.
Deanne attended Willamette University. She became a registered medical technologist, later furthering her education in cytotechnology and working in pathology at Vancouver Memorial Hospital. She ended her professional career as supervisor of the blood bank department at Southwest Washington Medical Center. She raised 4 children while working full time. Deanne’s home was a welcoming gathering place for her children’s friends, who still think of her with deep affection.
The mountains of the NW gave Deanne and Dale many years of backpacking adventures. Together they also built a vacation home on the Washington coast where family gatherings included clam digging, mushroom hunting, and tide pool exploring. She was always a thoughtful steward of the earth and its wonders. Deanne and Dale were avid gardeners and grew a wide variety of vegetables from seed and harvested year round. An accomplished and creative cook, Deanne lovingly created delicious meals highlighting their organic produce. Deanne even incorporated their veggies into home cooked meals for their beloved pets. Several of Deanne’s specialties remain staples at holiday meals. Though she gladly shared her recipes, when prepared by others, they were not quite as tasty because Mom always included a large dose of love in every dish she made. Even after her esophageal cancer diagnosis last winter she grew one last crop of peas which she was able to harvest, enjoy eating and sharing with others.
Deanne’s skillful sewing provided lovely clothing for her daughters as they were growing up, including prom dresses and dance recital costumes. Custom upholstered furniture and drapes for the home came from her sewing machine as well.
Upon retiring 33 years ago, Deanne bought herself a computer. Her love/frustration relationship with her computer, and its ever-changing technology, was ongoing until her death.
Deanne’s Christian faith was strong and lifelong. She was an active member of Immanuel Lutheran Church, and its congregation was a constant in her life. Deanne felt it important for the church to reach out and be part of the community and was one of the driving forces in the creation of Safe Haven, an after school program launched in 2006 that still operates today.
Deanne is survived by 3 of her 4 children: Kathi Anderson (Ted), Jeff Adams and Shawn Holter (AJ); six grandchildren; seven great-grandchildren and four great-great-grandchildren. Her son James (Buz) died in 1978.
The void she has left is great but her memory will live long in the lives of those she touched.
The family would like to thank Glenwood Place and Community Home Hospice for helping our Mom these last months of her life.
Donations in her name can be made to the Immanuel Lutheran Safe Haven program or The Humane Society for SW Washington.
Due to COVID-19, Deanne’s memorial service will be held online September 12, 2020.
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Published in The Columbian on Jul. 26, 2020.
Memorial service
Memories & Condolences
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10 entries
July 31, 2020
Laurie Swales
July 30, 2020
In loving memory of a wonderful woman who was a blessing to all of her faith family
Margie Warren
July 30, 2020
Dee Keyes
July 30, 2020
Deanne was a mentor to me when I joined Vancouver Memorial Hospital as a very young member of the nursing department. She was always ready to interpret lab results, explain procedures, and share the vast knowledge she had. I became reacquainted when I joined Immanuel where her warmth and that great smile greeted everyone. Rest in the arms of the Lord!
Ann Wanke Pongon
July 29, 2020
We're so sorry that Deanne's flame has now gone out!
But we have comfort in that Deanne had a very long and rich life.
We cherish our memory of when we met Deanne on her 85th birthday, eight years ago, when we visited our friends Kathi and Ted a week in Vancouver Wa. We had a very nice time at the Anderson dining table with Deanne
Thereafter, we kept in touch between Malmö Sweden and Vancouver Wa via letter and email.
Margareta and Lars Grefmar, Swedish friends
Margareta och Lars Grefmar
July 27, 2020
I'm sorry for the family's loss and extend my condolences. What a wonderful person Deanne was. I worked with her at VMH for a few years and she was good to work with. Totally capable in the stressful and challenging environment of Blood Bank , she was seldom flustered or upset ( and red in the face). In retrospect, she was a guiding light of treating people with respect and kindness at work and everywhere. I always enjoyed talking with her and sharing news about family and coworkers and life. She lived her beliefs and was filled with goodness which she shared with all of us.
Curt Mohler
July 26, 2020
My heart hurts. She was also a mother to so many neighbor kids and her kids friends. I was lucky enough to have been one of those “extra” kids. I don’t think in all the years I hung out at the Adams house there was a time when it was not full of kids. Her home was always a safe haven. Her love and attention made each of us feel so wanted. I am sad we will not be able to get together in person to celebrate her life; I will miss listening to the many stories of her special love. Her song has ended, but her melody lives on in all of us lucky enough to have known her. See you later Mrs. Adams.
Debi Stanich
July 26, 2020
How blessed I am to have had this extraordinary woman, my great-grandmother, in my life for 32 years. She enriched my childhood with so many special memories - far too many to share here. One of my favorites was the summer I was able to attend VBS at her church with my sister and 2nd cousins. She made us kids a daily menu for each meal, and made it such a fun, memorable week. She was my go to person for gardening advice and had the best recipes/ideas for my garden bounty. I admired her unshakeable faith and they way she lived to serve the Lord. I'll miss her terribly - until I see her again ❤
Jennifer Fisher
July 26, 2020
Read this with tears streaming down my face. How blessed I've been to have her as my great-grandmother for 32 years. She enriched my childhood with irreplaceable, special memories. Her legacy will live on through the family she loved so well. Until we meet again, Grandma. ❤
Love, Jenny
Jennifer Fisher
July 26, 2020
I have fond Memories of your Mom from church and from the neighborhood. She was always so friendly. I think if her often when I walk past her old house.
Jennifer McDonald
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