Jeanette Wirth Jeanette Annabel (Mason) Wirth of Falcon Heights died Dec. 13.
She was born in Marion, N.D., on Dec. 13, 1921, the fifth child of eight to Chester and Rosa Mason. She grew up in Bismarck, N.D., and helped with the family bee and honey business and selling garden plants.
Although very shy as a young woman, she received an RN degree from the Bismarck Hospital and went to New York City for a military training course for nurses at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center. Initially rejected by the Navy Nurse Corps because of her poor eyesight, she was accepted into the Army Nurse Corps. She often reminisced about the training at Camp Carson, Colo., and Marysville, Calif. Assigned to a hospital ship, she went to Honolulu. She also saw the POWs who returned from the Bataan Death March and remembered that vividly. Further travels as an Army nurse included stays at Okinawa and Korea. Shortly after World War II ended, she returned to work in Bismarck, where she met Ray Wirth. Jeanette took advantage of the GI bill and moved to Minnesota, where she earned a degree in public health from the University of Minnesota. After graduation, she and Ray were married on Aug. 13, 1950. Jeanette and Ray raised four children in Falcon Heights. She is remembered as a loving mother who encouraged creativity in music, art and physical activities for all her children. She loved playing the piano and entered many flower arrangements in State Fair competitions. She traveled to Israel, Africa, Europe and Iceland. She was preceded in death by her husband, Raymond, on Christmas Day 2007. She is survived by her children Brenda (Steven) Tilton, Rosanne (Steve Nosek), Dan and Jonathan; eight grandchildren; a great-grandson; and two step-grandchildren. A celebration of her life was held at Central Baptist Church on Dec. 21, with burial at Fort Snelling National Cemetery.