Florine Hemus

Florine Hemus

Florine Hemus, 76, beloved wife, died, Wednesday, June 30, 2010, at Providence Hospital with her husband, Bob, and children by her side.

Survivors include her husband of 44 years, Bob Hemus, of Medford, Ore; children, Anne Wilson, of Brookings Ore., Mary (Clark) Willis, of Drain, Ore., Richard (Julie) Balding, of Elk Grove, Ore., Robert J. (Debbie) Hemus, of Orleans, Calif., Robert L. (Lisa) Hemus, Jr., of Kilgore, Texas; grandchildren, Matthew Wilson, Christopher and Jennifer Balding; John and Cody Hemus; brothers and sisters, Wallace Carter, of Running Springs, Calif., Judy (Allan) Westbrook, of Lanark, Ill., Nancy West, of Paris, Texas, and Stan (Lillie) Carter, of Conrad, S.C.; several loving cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

Rene (rhymes with "queen", because her big brother couldn't say Florine when she was born) was the second child of Wallace Carter and Gladys Nelson Carter. She was born in an Army Air Corps field in Texas, on May 12, 1934. Being a military brat, Rene, her brother, and two sisters did a lot of moving before the war. Rene spent most of her school years in Manitou Springs, Colo.

She met her first husband, Richard Balding, in high school in Perris, Calif. They were married and had four children, Anne, Mary, Richard and Robert. They were divorced in 1961. Rene had several jobs before she went to work at Perris Junior High School in 1964. She was hired as the attendance secretary. Rene met her future husband in 1966, when he was hired as a substitute music teacher. The family moved to Happy Camp, Calif., in August of 1969, to teach school, and Rene was hired as the first teachers' aide at the elementary school. The next year she was hired as the district secretary. She left that job in 1980, to become a full time homemaker, something she had been unable to do for 19 years. That lasted long enough for Rene to go to work on the 2000 census. She was in charge of the Siskiyou County, west of I-5, which included a very small portion of California completely land-locked in Oregon. She had to drive over a pass in the Siskiyou Mountains to Oregon to count about 20 people.

Rene's interests included reading. By the time she moved from Happy Camp, she had accumulated in her library, 1,900 books. She also sewed and repaired her husband's and children's clothes. Rene also made a lot of her children's clothes too. In the early Happy Camp years, she and Bob explored as many back roads as their 4X4 Nissan Patrol could navigate, which were many. Rene took an adult class to learn Spanish, which Marta Tello taught for several years. Another interest was the adult sewing class that Marta taught.

Since Bob retired in 1991, Rene and Bob were always seen together. They thoroughly enjoyed each other's company.

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