Hazel Irene Tilson, 81, died on Wednesday, June 26, 2013 at the Lake District Hospital/Nursing Home, Lakeview. Her strong will to live, unwavering faith in God, and the love and prayers of family carried her through many months of deteriorating health with Alzheimer’s disease. Hazel is now resting peacefully in the arms of her Savior Jesus.
Hazel was born on Dec. 31, 1931 in Fremont, Neb. to George and Elizabeth Carleton. She was the eldest of four children. From Nebraska, her parents moved the family west to Sandpoint, Idaho during the Depression years to find work. Later, the family moved again to Willow Ranch, Calif. It was here in Modoc County that Hazel lived out her life.
Hazel met her sweetheart, Ron Echard, in school, riding the bus together from Willow Ranch to Alturas, Calif. where they attended high school. The couple was married July 18, 1948. The couple lived a couple years at Willow Ranch where Ron was employed at the lumber mill, and then moved to the family ranch at Davis Creek, Calif. where she lived out the remaining 62 years of her life. Ron preceded her in death at age 45 in 1974.
Hazel had a variety of interests but they centered, in particular, around her faith, family, music, and the ranch. Her early married years were focused on caring for and nurturing her daughters.
Ron and Hazel both loved music and instilled that in their daughters from an early age. At a young age the girls sang as a quintet and the family performed at many events both in and out of the County. Hazel routinely sewed each of their matching dresses for the various events.
After marrying Perry on June 7, 1976 and the girls had all left home, her interests focused more on her home, yard and pets. She loved her flowers and the variety of birds that graced her yard. She and Perry worked together in their yard and spent many enjoyable hours sitting on the front porch watching the birds and squirrels at the feeders. All her children and grandchildren received beautiful crocheted afghans that will be cherished forever.
She is preceded in death by her parents; her first husband Ron; brother George; sister Dorothy; son-in-law Dennis Caldwell.
She is survived by her husband Perry of 37 years; daughters Lynette Sturgeon of Alturas, Calif.; Valene Clayton of Bremerton, Wash.; Arletta Anderson of Baker City; Rhonda Dorris of Yreka,Calif. and Marva Echard-Bassett of Coos Bay; 12 grandchildren; 22 great-grandchildren.
Hazel’s life was celebrated at the family ranch at Davis Creek on July 2, 2013 and was followed with a graveside service at the Davis Creek Cemetery.