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Lena Mae Haegen

 

Lena Mae Haegen, 92, went to be with our Lord on Sunday, February 24, 2019. She died at her place of residence in Spokane, Washington, after a lengthy struggle with dementia.

She was born August 2, 1926, to Mary and Julius Barnes in Woodruff, Kansas. Her family moved to Trenton, Nebraska, while Lena Mae was still a toddler. She attended school in Trenton where she met her future husband on the very first day. In January 1947 she married her high school sweetheart, and love of her life, Phil Haegen. They were married 70 years and had three daughters.

Lena Mae began working for the U.S. Post Office while she was still in high school. That turned out to be her life's work, and she worked at local post offices in Page, Arizona, and Grand Coulee, Washington, where she retired with more than 30 years service in 1986. The family had moved to Page in 1957 and on to Grand Coulee in 1967. She and Phil lived there for 47 years before moving to Spokane in 2015.

Lena Mae was an avid reader who kept her local library very busy. She loved doing crossword and jigsaw puzzles. Bowling was also a big part of her life in Arizona. She and Phil were involved in years of bowling leagues and enjoyed traveling to all the state tournaments. Golf was a sport that she decided to learn in order to keep up with her women friends. Eventually she got good enough to play with Phil and loved every minute of it. She always enjoyed meeting new people, and she was quick to recognize and help people in need. As a result she had many, many friends whom she truly cared about. She attended church regularly and participated in and hosted Bible studies in her home. During her working years she had a rural mail route that she drove in her little pickup and delighted in delivering mail in record time! For those who were unable to get to their mailboxes, Lena Mae would bring their mail right to the door. Everyone knew the "mail lady" and appreciated her smile and wave as she drove her route.

Lena Mae and Phil were blessed to have over 20 years of retirement together and traveled to many places. She was always most excited when they were on their way to visit their Nebraska relatives and friends whom she had kept in touch with for 50 years.

Mom was a kind, caring, optimistic, thoughtful and giving wife, mom, mother-in-law, Gramma and friend. She always put her family first and loved us all so much. We will miss her more than we can imagine and keep her in our hearts forever.

Lena Mae is survived by her three daughters: Cindy (Doug) Fritsch, Kristy (Jim) Sooter and Kim (Steve) Pietroburgo; five grandchildren: Meghan Fritsch, Biagio and Olivia Pietroburgo, Jeff Sooter and Debbie Taylor; five great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. She also leaves behind three sisters, Verlene Swift (Cottage Grove, OR), Ada Mary Cole and Ruth Wickizer (both Loup City, NE).

She was preceded in death by her husband Phil in 2017, and a granddaughter, Alicelena Mae Fritsch.

The family would like to express our appreciation and gratitude to the people at Cornerstone Memory Care and Horizon Hospice in Spokane.

There will be a memorial service for Lena Mae at Coulee Dam Community Church in Coulee Dam, Washington, on Saturday, March 16, 2019, at 1 p.m.

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