She graduated from Sonora High School and then went to Louisville to work in the Curtiss-Wright plant to help the war effort. It was there she met the love of her life, Cecil Thornton. They were married in 1944 and moved to the Lansing area after the war. She worked for the Waverly School District from 1960 until her retirement in 1981. She eventually was head cashier at the Waverly Senior High School. After retirement, she and Cecil spent half of the year in Florida and half here in Michigan. She was a member of First Presbyterian Church. She has lived in Florida since 1999.
She was preceded in death by her husband Cecil in 1986 and her son Lyle in 2008. She is survived by her son, Stanley; stepsons, Dexter (Margaret) and Walter (Sue) Thornton; stepdaughters, Faye Brumleve and Joyce Gnau; daughters-in-law, Beth and Susan Thornton; assorted grandchildren including, Oliver (Juliane), Jessica (Joe) Luby, Duane (Christy) and Katie Mae Thornton; and great-grandchildren, Caelen, Westly and Atticus Luby; Emilia, Daniel, Miles and Nicholas Thornton who recently helped her celebrate her 90th Birthday. She is also survived by numerous step-grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren.
The funeral service will be held at 10:00 a.m. Monday, June 27, 2011, at the Estes-Leadley Greater Lansing Chapel, with interment in Deepdale Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends at the funeral home from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Sunday. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the American Heart Association or Boy Scouts of America.