Wilma Lucille Kinzie was born December 10, 1923 in Orange County, CA ; the first born daughter of Jesse Guy Kinzie and Hazel Belle Killingsworth. When she was one year old, the family moved back to Kansas selling her baby crib to another young couple for their son Stanley Filbrun. Mother enjoyed a happychildhood on a farm near Sawyer, Kansas among many cousins and friends. She and her 3 sisters loved to sing and spent hours harmonizing together. Realizing her need of a Savior, she was baptized on August 30, 1942 by Elder John Reecealong with 5 other girls and became a member of the Old German Baptist Brethren Church.
As a young woman, Mother moved to Indiana, working in a furniture factory and developing many lifelong friendships. In January of 1946, she came toCalifornia with Mary Angle and began helping Phyllis Flory with her newborn daughter Shirley. Somehow the baby’s Uncle Stanley needed to wash his car there every day and a romance blossomed. Dad and Mother were married on May 15, 1946, at her parent’s home in Sawyer, Kansas by Elder Alva Turner. They began life together in a little house on Hatch Road and in 1951 moved to their new home on Central Avenue where they raised three children, Robert, Janet and Galen and spent the remainder of their years together. They farmed apricots, grapes, peaches and walnuts. They also operated a cutting shed where many young people worked during their summers. In 1956, Dad and Mother were called to the office of the ministry in the Modesto District and were charter members of the Tuolumne congregation when it was formed in 1957, faithfully serving in that capacity for 52 years. They enjoyed many trips to church meetings, traveling each year to annual conference and hosted countless guests and Sunday dinners, which always included her famous custard. Mother was very energetic and creative, excelling in sewing, quilting, crocheting, cooking and canning, using them as a blessing to her family and others. Stanley and Wilma shared their home with several young people during these busy years, creating lasting relationships.
Mother suffered several small strokes during the recent months that left her unable to live independently. Hospice care was begun in February 2022, as she began to experience physical difficulties which led to her passing this life to a better one in the early morning hours of April 19, 2022. Left to mourn her loss are her children, Robert and Sue Filbrun, Ray and Janet Benedict, Galen and Brenda Filbrun and sister Della Knaus, She leaves eleven grandchildren and their spouses, Leslie and Melanie Bowman, Todd and Jessica Filbrun, Jesse and Megan Slothour, Jay and Maggie Hawbaker, Layne and Tara Filbrun, Matthan and Jolene Benedict, Christian and Amy Filbrun, Colin and Maribeth Filbrun, Karly Filbrun, Kayley Filbrun, Ashlan Filbrun as well as 27 great grandchildren, one great greatgrandchild and many nieces and nephews. Preceding her in death was her loving husband, Stanley in 2008; as well as her sisters Margaret (and Harold) Miller, Gladys (and David) Metzger, and brother-in-law Wayne Knaus. Also sister-in-laws Phyllis (and Howard) Flory, Pauline (and Merven) Grover, Doris (and Earl) Fisher, Doris Denlinger Fisher and Lois Bauman Flory and three great grandchildren, Cephas Bowman, Jill Hawbaker and Janae Hawbaker.
We wish to thank the Tuolumne church family, the dedicated caregivers, and the kind neighbors who assisted the family over the years in honoring their Mother’s wishes to live out her days in her own home. We also want to acknowledge the care provided by the staff of the Graceful Living home on Amos Court in her final week. We are grateful to God for the mother we had and for her many examples, and praise Him for many precious memories which we will carry until we meet again.
A funeral service was conducted in the Tuolumne meetinghouse on Wednesday April 27 at 2 pm by Brother Stephen Bowman and Elder Daryl Landes. Anticipating the return of the Lord, Mother’s body was laid to rest in the Wood Colony Cemetery with final remarks by Elder Roger Knaus.
“Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints.” Psalm 116:15
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