Alma Milelich, 97

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Alma Josephine Folden Mihelich entered eternal life peacefully at home on March 1, 2010. She was born in Clearwater, Idaho, on July 27, 1912, to Martin and Emma (Olson) Folden, the seventh of eight children, all of whom preceded her in death.

She came to North Idaho as a freshman at Coeur d’Alene High School and worked for her board, a challenge she was proud of meeting all her life. Though it was wrenching to be separated from her widowed mother and many of her family, her sister Clara did the same, and they persevered together. Alma graduated from Coeur d’Alene High School in 1930.

After attending business school, Alma was employed at the F. W. Woolworth Company, where she met the store manager, Joe Mihelich, and they were married in Seattle on Jan. 10, 1944, after Joe had joined the Navy. After residing at the Farragut Naval Station and briefly in Spokane, Wash., they settled in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, where they raised five children.

Alma became a Catholic at St. Thomas Church on Dec. 20, 1959. She was a member of the St. Thomas Auxiliary and active as a Cub Scout den mother. Her favorite hobby was gardening, and she worked wonders on every inch of the Mihelich property.

Alma was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Joe; brothers Oscar, Ed and Henry Folden; sisters Julia Folden, Mabel Hand, Thelma Skinner and Clara Melis.

She is survived by her children and their spouses; Sister Christine Mihelich, IHM, Mike Mihelich, Coeur d’Alene, John Mihelich, Estancia, New Mexico, Ed and Lorie Mihelich, Evergreen, Colo., Tom and Becky Mihelich, Portland, Ore.; her grandsons Christopher Mihelich and wife, Laura Openshaw, and Patrick Mihelich, as well as nieces and nephews.

Vigil service will be held at at 7 p.m. Sunday, March 7, 2010, at English Funeral Chapel, Coeur d’Alene, with funeral Mass at 11 a.m. Monday, March 8, 2010, at St. Thomas Catholic Church, Coeur d’Alene, burial to follow at St. Thomas Catholic Cemetery, Coeur d’Alene.

Please sign Alma’s guest registry and view her online memorial at www.englishfuneralchapel.com.

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