Irene Ruth Finley died Dec. 13, 2002, in Coupeville surrounded by members of her family.
She was born Jan. 1, 1913, in Inavale, Neb., to Valley Clyde and Bessie Viola Mitchell.
Irene moved to Coupeville from Libby, Mont., in 1970. While in Libby,
she served as surgical nurse at Libby Memorial Hospital, as a nurse for Dr. Woodrow Nelson and directed the Lincoln County Nursing Home in Libby. She moved to Coupeville where she was hired as the operating room supervisor for the new Whidbey General Hospital. Irene was promoted to director of nursing in 1973 and held that position until 1978 when she retired after 40 years of nursing. She graduated from nurses training in 1937 in Sheridan, Wyo., and went on to graduate school at St. Mary’s in Rodchester, Minn., where she became proficient in operating room procedures and techniques.
Irene was preceded in death by her husband Harold Finley and her sister Nelda French.
She is survived by her five children, Bill Browne and wife Sylvia of Edmonds, Judi Kitchin and husband Dennis of Marysville, Sam Browne and wife Beverly of Mukilteo, Sue Nelson and husband Dennis of Coupeville and Terry Browne and wife Sue of Helena, Mont.; step-daughter Debbie Rothweiler of Bothell and step-sons Kenny Browne of Spokane and Gerald Finley of Yakima; 13 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren. Nephew Bob Parsons of Libby and niece Ann Wright of Bull Lake also survive her.
Irene had many friends in Coupeville and Libby and will be dearly missed by all.
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face;
the rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again may God hold you in the palm of His hand.
A memorial celebrating Irene’s life will be held Saturday, Dec. 21, at 11 a.m., at Coupeville Community Bible Church, 502 NE Otis St.
In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to Coupeville Community Bible Church or Home Health Care of Whidbey Island.