Norma Mae Rabedeaux, 87, of Eau Claire, passed away Tuesday morning, September 3, 2019, peacefully at her home where she wanted to be after being diagnosed with cancer 5 months ago. Her wish was to be at her home when she went to the Pearly Gates to be with her baby son that died 5 years ago, Jason.
Born October 4, 1931, in southeast Iowa, Winfield IA, on a farm to J. Harry and Lela (Butcher) Conard. Mae would have been 88 next month. She was called Mae in Iowa and Norma in the two other states she lived in, Aurora IL and Eau Claire WI.
On the farm her mother died when Norma was 16. She did the chores daily with her father and two brothers then went to school. She became the woman of the house to her father and two brothers when her mother passed. She married Clayton B. Rabedeaux, from Winfield IA, in 1952. They had three sons. Jeff the oldest, Jack the middle son and Jason the baby son that died in 2014. Norma and Clayton got divorced after moving to Eau Claire in 1972 from Illinois. Even though divorced and living in different states they stayed as a family with the boys to this day. They would even spend holidays together with the boys being a family. Clayton was a high school basketball coach in Iowa and Illinois and a college athletic director in Nevada. Needless to say, Norma was a sports fan. She enjoyed watching the Chicago Cubs daily and rooting on the Chicago Bears in the fall. A true joy was following her grandchildren in sports.
When Norma moved to Eau Claire and after raising 3 sons she re-entered the elementary education field at Robins Elementary School for 20 plus years. There she left her genuine personality on fellow teachers and young children. She was known as Mrs. Rabedeaux.
After retiring from Robins her greatest joy was being a friend to all and grandma to Jason’s 3 children: Beau, Cole and granddaughter Riley. Great grandmother (GG) to Jack’s two grandsons, Easton and Isaiah.
Jason’s boy, Cole lived with her the last 3 years going to UWEC and playing basketball for the Blugolds. She looked forward to going to Blugold basketball games sitting in the first row behind the Blugold bench and cheering the Golds on.
Norma had many friends and is survived by her children Jeff and Jack (Darlene). Her former husband Clayton Rabedeaux and his wife Caryl of Peoria, AZ. Her former husband and his wife Caryl stayed close to up to the final day with her. Once a family always a family.
Thank you to Heartland Hospice who were wonderful people to Norma and the family. Special thanks to the three nurses from Heartland who cared for Norma during her final days. (Tiffney, Angie and Julie-Ann). Special thanks also to Marlene, a family friend who spent the evenings with Norma for the last 30 days to help with her needs and make nighttime comfortable.
A memorial service will be held at 11am on Tuesday, September 10, 2019, at First Congregational United Church of Christ, 310 Broadway St. in Eau Claire with Rev. Dr. Mark X. Pirazzini officiating. Visitation will begin at 10am at church with a lunch to be served following Pastor Mark’s words. Burial will be held at a later date in Winfield Scott Township Cemetery, Winfield, IA. In lieu of flowers please send donations/memorials to Heartland Hospice, 3410 Oakwood Mall Dr Ste 400, Eau Claire, WI 54701.
Lenmark-Gomsrud-Linn Funeral and Cremation Services is assisting the family with arrangements. For online condolence, please visit www.lenmarkfh.com