Betty Ella Paronen passed on June 22, 2019, after a short battle with an aggressive form of dementia. Betty was born in Astoria on Oct. 1, 1942, to Chris and Bernice (Pearson) Simonsen. Raised in Knappa with her two sisters, Jane and Sue, Betty enjoyed 4-H, her animals, music and spending time with her cousins. She graduated from Knappa High School and attended Good Samaritan in Portland, where she received her registered nurse designation. She returned to Knappa and married Carl Paronen in 1964. Not long after, they purchased property and beef cattle in Brownsmead, where they spent the rest of their 54 years of marriage. They have two children, David (Bev) and Linda (Tom), and three grandchildren, Brandon (David) and Maiya and Jenna (Linda).
Betty enjoyed her career as a nurse in Astoria, where she worked in family practice and obstetrics/gynecology until she retired at 65. She particularly liked the connection to her patients, and taking care of multiple generations of families. She was an active member of the Lutheran Church, and volunteered at the senior meal site in Svensen. Outside of work, Betty loved life on the farm with Carl! Gardening, walking their country roads and watching the antics of their cows, pets and various wildlife kept her busy. Betty always looked forward to time together with family, and often spent hours making their favorite foods to celebrate occasions. She loved seeing her grandkids, and hearing about the things going on in their lives. Remembered by her family as thrifty but generous and giving, she was always willing to help a worthy cause. Betty kept her sense of humor until the end, and was able to see the positive, even in the midst of a difficult situation. Her warm smile, encouraging ways and easygoing manner will be greatly missed. We rejoice knowing she is receiving her wish to “walk with Jesus.”
A celebration of her life is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 3, at 11 a.m., at the Svensen Wickiup Grange, 92683 Svensen Market Road in Astoria. Donations in Betty’s memory can be made to the Lewy Body Dementia Association, 912 Killian Hill Road S.W., Lilburn, GA., 30047, or online at lbda.org
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