Violet Marie Bibby, 90, of Roseburg, passed away peacefully in her sleep at 3:15 p.m., Saturday, December 28, 2019 at the Rose Haven Nursing Center in Roseburg, OR. She was surrounded by her family. She was born May 24, 1929 in Onamia, Minnesota, to Ernest Frederick Wolff and Clara Matilda (Nelson) Wolff.
Violet grew up on a small farm, and as the youngest girl in the family, she always said that she learned mostly how to avoid work. Her older brother and sisters took great care of her. She liked school and enjoyed writing and sketching and boys. Violet was very intelligent, displayed a keen wit and had a great sense of humor throughout her life.
She was editor of the Onamia High School’s newspaper and she graduated as salutatorian, in her class of 42 students, in May 1947. After high school she completed a year of college and then showed her adventurous side by enlisting in the Women’s Army Corp in October 1949. She enjoyed the comradery of being a WAC including all the training and travel. She served for three years and seven months and achieved the rank of sergeant.
She was discharged from the Army on February 28, 1953 and married the love of her life, Merl Elton Bibby, on March 14, 1953. During the next 16 years, as an Army wife, she spent a tour in both Germany and Alaska, lived in 23 different houses and had two children before they retired in Roseburg in 1968. Violet immediately fell in love with Oregon and camping at the coast or up in the mountains were her favorite activities. During this time, she suffered with but survived colon cancer! She enjoyed bowling, pinochle, and baseball on TV with Merl until his death in 2000.
She enjoyed gardening and was especially good at growing things like peas, green beans, chard, tomatoes, squash and rhubarb. She also frequented Kruse or u-picked corn, peaches, strawberries and walnuts. She froze or canned just about everything. She loved to cook, and everyone loved her food. At Christmas she always made the chocolate and pumpkin pies and hand cracked walnuts for her children and grandchildren. She enjoyed reading (she owned every novel by Eleanor Burford Hibbert under her pseudonyms Victoria Holt, Jean Plaidy and Philippa Carr). She developed a taste for classical music and one of her favorite experiences was to attend an opera in Eugene. She also learned to enjoy the casino and every Saturday morning when she could drive, she was off to 7 Feathers to make her fortune.
Violet is preceded in death by her parents Ernest and Clara; her husband of nearly 48 years, Merl (who died on the same day: December 28, 2000); and her five brothers and sisters: Dorothy Emerson, Raymond Wolff, Rose Wilson, Viola Perrotti and Ernest Wolff.
Violet is survived by her son, Michael Bibby; daughter and husband, Mary Grubbs (Bibby) and Melvin Grubbs; five grandchildren, Brian Grubbs, Jenny Kathan (Grubbs), Michael Bibby, Jr., Matthew Bibby and Lisa Mower (Bibby); 12 great-grandchildren; two great-great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. She will be missed, always loved, and never forgotten.
A funeral service will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, January 18, 2012, at Taylor’s Family Funeral Home, 245 SW Main, Winston, OR 97496. Violet was a veteran and military honors will be part of the service. Pastor Thomas Hirsch of St. Paul Lutheran Church will be officiating. Following the service, at 12:30 p.m., there will be a gathering for family and close friends at Abby’s Pizza on NE Stephens in Roseburg to share stories and memories. Per Violet’s request, her cremains have been buried next to her husband Merl at the Roseburg National Cemetery. Memorial contributions are not requested, however if you desire you may send a small flower arrangement to Taylor’s Family Funeral Home for the service.