Our beloved mother Coralee Hansen Keifer Thurgood, age 86, passed away March 13, 2021 in Orem.
She was born Feb. 6, 1935 in Centerfield, at home. Her parents were Glen Lamont and Grace Minnie Peterson Hansen. She was one of six children: LaVay (Coralee), Del, Faris, Nancy, and Kathy. Born in the time of the Great Depression, she learned to work at an early age. She worked in the sugar beet fields topping sugar beets, and at a turkey plant plucking turkeys. She said those types of jobs make you happy for any other kind of work. She loved her siblings and enjoyed telling them stories and making them believe in magic.
She attended Gunnison High School where she was a cheerleader and played French horn in the band. She talked very fondly of her band teacher Mr. Ericson who believed in her and helped her feel confident enough to learn music. After graduation, she moved to Salt Lake City to spread her wings and experience big city life.
A few years down the road she married Bob Keifer and had a beautiful dark-haired baby girl she named Pam. She and Bob later divorced and she started to raise Pam in a home she bought on her own in Provo. After a few years, she married Garth Thurgood and had a son she named Jesse. After a few years, they divorced and she devoted her life to making a safe happy home for her two children.
Coralee attended Utah Technical College in Provo where she studied secretarial and office management work. She got a job working for Utah County in various job capacities, county clerk’s offices, Department of Civil Defense, the USU Extension Office for Utah State University, and the Utah Department of Agriculture. She worked for Utah County for over 35 years. She loved her co-workers and often would stand up for fairness in the workplace.
She paid off her home, lived debt-free, and managed to raise and take her children on a family vacation every summer on a single-parent income. She sacrificed so much for her children.
She loved her Heavenly Father and taught her children to love Him and to trust in Him.
She was an amazing mother and grandmother and she has five grandchildren that she adored, Matthew (Beth), Jeremy, Jesse, Karlie (Sam), and Angel.
Coralee lived life on her terms. She was genuine and kind and appreciated that in others. She was generous with her money, her time, and her love of her fellow man. She supported her children and grandchildren in everything they were interested in. She believed in helping others and did so with endless charitable donations and service.
“If we are ever caught doing something kind it is because of the way our beautiful mother raised and taught us. We will miss her more than words can express but we will go forward with the faith and hope she taught us of a glorious heavenly reunion through the Gospel and Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,” family members said, “We love you, mom and appreciate all the love you so freely gave to us.”
Coralee is survived by her children: Pam and Vaughn Barrus of Centerfield; Jesse Lynn Thurgood of Provo; five grandchildren; siblings: LaVay Hansen of American Fork; Del and Anadel Hansen of Littleton, Colorado; Nancy and Jay Reynolds of Provo; Kathy Dodge of Orem.
She is preceded in death by parents; and a brother, Faris Hansen.
Graveside services will be held on Saturday, March 20, 2021 at noon in the Gunnison City Cemetery.
Friends may call for viewing at the Centerfield LDS Ward Chapel, 230 South Main Street in Centerfield, Friday evening from 6-8 p.m. or Saturday morning from 10:30-11:30 a.m. prior to the services. Because of COVID-19 mandates, all attendees are required to wear a mask and obey social distancing.
Burial will be in the Gunnison City Cemetery under the care of the Springer Turner Funeral Home of Richfield and Salina, Utah. Online guest book at: www.springerturner.com.