Rose Mary was born on Jan. 13, 1947, in Cheyenne, Wyo., and died on Jan. 20, 2012, in the presence of her loving family at Hospice House in Coeur d'Alene.
Rose Mary was the second of four children of Jim and Eileen Poelma. She grew up in the rural farming community of Carpenter, Wyo., 20 miles southeast of Cheyenne. She lived in a community, school and family where faith and music went hand-in-hand with the hard work of farming. Her grandmother taught her to play the piano at an early age, and the rest of her family often played music together as a group, whether it was during informal family gatherings or for barn dances.
Rose Mary graduated from Carpenter High School in 1965, which had a class of seven. She then attended the University of Wyoming, majoring in music and playing the clarinet in the marching band. She was involved at the St. Paul's Newman Center in Laramie, Wyo., an on-campus organization for Catholic students and faculty. Attending daily Catholic Mass was a high priority. It was through the Newman Center that her brother introduced her to Joe Peak. Rose Mary stayed at the university for one year, then moved to Cheyenne to work for the state of Wyoming in administrative services.
She and Joe were married on May 16, 1970, and moved to Anchorage, Alaska, where they lived until moving to North Idaho in 1978 to manage the Enaville Resort. Rose Mary quickly found a need for her musical talents in the Silver Valley and became the organist at St. Rita's Catholic Church in Kellogg and a pianist for the Sixth Street Melodrama in Wallace. Her loving smile and ability to meet and help people is legendary in the Silver Valley.
Rose Mary is survived by her husband, Joe, of 41 years; three children, Rev. Jimmy Peak, Jacque and her husband Kevin Haler of Coeur d'Alene, and Andy and his wife Sharis of Rose Lake; four grandchildren - Makai, AJ, Anthony and Aspen; mother Eileen; brothers Joe and Ron; and sister Joann. Rose Mary is preceded in death by her father, Jim.
Rose Mary contributed to the people of the Silver Valley in countless ways during her 34 years here, and her presence will be greatly missed.
The vigil will take place at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012, at St. Rita's Catholic Church in Kellogg, with a reception to follow. The funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2012, at St. Pius X Catholic Church in Coeur d'Alene, with a reception to follow. Final interment will take place at Holy Cross Cemetery in Spokane on Wednesday afternoon.
The family would like to thank the staff of Hospice of North Idaho for their compassionate care.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to St. Rita's Catholic Church in Kellogg or Hospice of North Idaho.
You may sign Rose Mary's online guest book at www.shoshonefuneralservice.com.
Shoshone Funeral Service, Kellogg, is entrusted with the funeral arrangements.