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Norma L. Abbott, 92, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, aunt and friend passed away peacefully with family by her side on January 14, 2021, at her home in Mesa, AZ.
Norma, the youngest child of James Charles Bennett and Bessie M. Clegg Bennett, was born on September 1, 1928 in Wood County, W.Va. She graduated from high school in nearby Belpre, Ohio where she met her future husband, Seth C. Abbott. They married on December 2, 1947 and had been married nearly 59 years when he passed away in 2006. They had a daughter, Cheryl and a son, Terry before they moved to Arizona in 1959.
Norma started taking college classes when a friend wanted to do it together. Once she started she did not stop until she had a degree in Elementary Education. She got a job teaching 3rd grade at J.O. Combs School in Queen Creek, at age 44, and retired after 20 years of nurturing hundreds of young minds including two of her own grandchildren.
Norma was known for her kind heart and generous nature. She loved her family and friends unconditionally and would do anything she could to help those in need. She was curious and had a sense of adventure, traveling with her children, after her husband died, to Hawaii and Alaska to see the grizzly bears. The recent isolation due to the covid pandemic was hard on her but stories of the antics of her great-grandchildren could always bring a ray of sunshine to her day and a smile to her face.
Norma’s father died when she was just four and a half months old. Her mother passed in 1974. Her brother, “Buss” was killed in France in World War II and she missed him terribly for the rest of her life. Her second brother, Kenneth, died at birth.
She is survived by her daughter, Cheryl Laflen and her son, Terry Abbott (Marge) all of Mesa. Her five granddaughters, who were her pride and joy: Deborah Martin (John) of Atlanta, GA, Caroline Swires (Jason) of Broomfield, CO., Amy Howard (Chantry) of Mesa, Nicole Jensen (Eric) of New Glarus, WI and Danielle Best (John) of Cave Creek. Three step-grandchildren, Karen Laflen of Flagstaff, AZ, Scott Laflen of Gilbert, AZ and Steve Laflen of Los Gatos, CA.
She had 11 great-grandchildren, Colin and Madison Martin, Joshua and Arya Swires, Sabian and Cadin Paup, Rowan Howard, Fallon and Reveillet Best, Brynna Farbod and Michael Laflen. A nephew, Alan Abbott of Mesa, a niece and grandniece, Gail and Bethany Seckman of Williamstown, W.VA and Worcester, MA respectively.
The family wishes to thank the staff of Emerald Groves Central and Noble Hospice who provided love and caring comfort for our mother for over five years and particularly in these last difficult days.
Donations to Norma’s favorite charities can be made to: Disabled American Veterans online at: secure.dav.org/donate or Salvation Army at salvationarmy.org