Irene Elizabeth Kemp Glass

June 28, 1927January 1, 2019
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Irene Elizabeth Kemp Glass, age 91, was called unexpectedly to her Savior Jesus Christ on Tuesday, January 1, 2019 to be reunited with her beloved husband, James Rufus (Jim) Glass married on July 10, 1945 for 34 years until his death.

In her golden years at age 86, on September 7, 2013 she married Al Giebelstein, age 88. They were married for 4 ½ years until his death in April of 2018.

Irene was born on June 28, 1927 in a rock house off Camp Ben McCullough Road near Driftwood, Texas to Willie Kemp and Fannie Teresa Ireland Kemp. She graduated from Austin High School and soon after WWII started her family with Jim. They had four girls, Peggy, JoAnn, Nancy, and Terri.

Irene kept the girls involved in many activities. She was an accomplished bookkeeper for many years at the 40 Acres Club and other businesses. Most recently, she was the bookkeeper for Cliff Barkley, CPA.

She attended Kinney Avenue Baptist Church, was a member of Woodlawn Baptist Church for many years, and was baptized at Friendship Baptist Church on Camp Ben McCullough Road.

Irene became a solo pilot in the seventies and flew over her property in Bastrop County many times. She went skydiving at age 89, was still mowing her own lawn, driving herself all over town, and volunteering at various places (even for “old” people, thought she didn’t consider herself to be “old”). She said she was shooting for 100. She recently became a mentor for a young girl at Joslin Elementary School.

She was the stalwart of the family and an example of enduring faith, love, and perseverance in all circumstances. She was not your typical mother or grandmother. Irene cherished family and hosted many events at the farm which was tagged as the Glass Ponderosa as well as her long-time residence on Roundup Trail.

Irene was a member of the Eastern Star Dripping Springs Chapter 860 and Daughters of the Confederacy Ike Turner Chapter.

She was very caring in visiting and sharing love with others that she met along life’s journey. Irene will always be in our heart and forever on our mind.

Irene was preceded in death by her husbands; parents; sister, Mary Lee Webb; and brother, Boone Kemp. She will be sadly missed by her beloved daughters, Peggy Kelm and husband, Tom, JoAnn Difrancesco, Nancy Zion, and Terri Murphy and husband, Bryan; grandchildren, Julie Kelm Campos and husband, Steve, Matthew Kelm and wife, Robin, Laurie Montgomery McKibben and husband, Randy, Zach Difrancesco and wife, Kristen, Tracy Difrancesco, Peyton Murphy, and Charles Duffield; 5 great-grandchildren; brother, Bill Kemp and wife, Suzon; numerous other relatives; and a host of friends.

The family will receive friends from 11:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M., Monday, January 7, 2019 at Cook-Walden/Forest Oaks Funeral Home followed by a Celebration of Irene’s Life at 12:00 P.M. in the Chapel officiated by Pastor Russell Allen. Interment will follow at Lytton Springs Cemetery.

Honoring Irene as pallbearers will be Bryan Murphy, Peyton Murphy, Tom Kelm, Matthew Kelm, Zach Difrancesco, Charles Duffield, Randy McKibben, and Steve Campos. Honorary pallbearers will be Mike Montgomery and Tom Difrancesco.


  • James Rufus (Jim) Glass, Husband
  • Al Giebelstein, Husband
  • Willie Kemp, Father
  • Fannie Teresa Ireland Kemp, Mother
  • Mary Lee Webb, Sister
  • Boone Kemp, Brother
  • Peggy Kelm, Daughter
  • Tom Kelm, Son-in-law
  • JoAnn Difrancesco, Daughter
  • Nancy Zion, Daughter
  • Terri Murphy, Daughter
  • Bryan Murphy, Son-in-law
  • Irene leaves behind her grandchildren, Julie Kelm Campos and husband, Steve, Matthew Kelm and wife, Robin, Laurie Montgomery McKibben and husband, Randy, Zach Difrancesco and wife, Kristen, Tracy Difrancesco, Peyton Murphy, and Charles Duffield; 5 great-grandchildren; brother, Bill Kemp and wife, Suzon; numerous other relatives; and a host of friends.

  • Bryan Murphy, Pallbearer
  • Peyton Murphy, Pallbearer
  • Tom Kelm, Pallbearer
  • Matthew Kelm, Pallbearer
  • Zach Difrancesco, Pallbearer
  • Charles Duffield, Pallbearer
  • Randy McKibben, Pallbearer
  • Steve Campos, Pallbearer
  • Mike Montgomery, Honorary Pallbearer
  • Tom Difrancesco, Honorary Pallbearer


  • Visitation Monday, January 7, 2019
  • Celebration of Life Monday, January 7, 2019
  • Interment Monday, January 7, 2019

Irene Elizabeth Kemp Glass

have a memory or condolence to add?

JoAnn DiFrancesco

February 20, 2019

Dear Mother, I just wanted to let you know how much your daughters loved you, as well as everyone else that you met and knew you for only a brief period of your life. I am so going to miss the loving notes of thanks that you sent for everything that we and everyone else did for you. Even if it was just a phone call on your birthday, you still took time to send me a note on a postcard expressing your appreciation for me calling you in the early morning to wish you a happy birthday. I am so thankful that you came to Dallas last August to Kathy Phillips birthday party. Everyone was so happy to see you. You made such an impression on Kathy’s daughter-in-law, Sarah Levy. She sent such a sweet sympathy card after your passing stating “I am so sorry for your loss. She was such a lovely person and I feel honored that I got to meet her that evening for Kathy’s birthday.”
It still seems surreal that you’re not here with us, Mother. I miss you more than I will ever be able to put in words. I know you are now in heaven with Daddy, your father and mother, and your brother and sister, who I know were waiting to see you there, but me, Peg, Nan, and Terri are so desperately missing you here and will never stop missing you.

Julie Campos

February 20, 2019

There is so much to say about my grandma that it’s difficult to know where to begin. She was spunky, opinionated, smart, feisty, independent, and resourceful – and she loved those around her deeply. Being a working woman all her life, getting her solo pilot’s license in the 70’s, and then running the Farm after my grandpa died – she was really extraordinary and way before her time. In the last few years, she was an avid volunteer – volunteering for CASA, as well as home-bound seniors (even though she was a senior herself!), and people in hospice care. She loved reading, was in a book club, and she took great pleasure in reading the "Austin American Statesman" newspaper. Her other great pleasure was Jesus, and she always had her daily devotional time.

Grandma routinely did things in a big way and with gusto. She would buy 20 pizzas when only 5 were necessary, 10 pinatas when only a couple were needed, 10 pies and 10 tubs of Cool-Whip at Thanksgiving for 30 people, 30 pinatas when only a couple were necessary, 200 buttons for a reunion of 25 people, etc. She always wanted to ensure that there was “enough” in any given situation. Her motivation was always from a heart of love.

Her departing words this past Christmas Day at my house to all those present (both family and new acquaintances) were, “I love each and every one of you.” Underlying her life was her devotion to the Lord and her love for Jesus. She was an enduring example to her family of her faith and trust in God, which meant attending church, reading her Bible, and praying. We all knew that she prayed for each of us daily.

It’s hard to believe that she’s actually gone, since it seemed that she was going to live forever. Of course, I know that she is – just not on this earth – as she’s enjoying the presence of Jesus and all the loved ones who passed before her.

Peggy Kelm

February 9, 2019

Mother and I traveled together, just the two
Of us, to Alaska, England-Scotland-Wales (1991) and in 1990 we were in the same tour group on a trip to Israel in 2010-2011.

We went to Alaska in July 1992. We flew in together to Anchorage, rented a car and drove to Wasilla to stay several days with friends Johnny and Carolyn Hunter. Wasilla, home of the Iditarod , we went to the visitors center and saw a film about the Iditarod. Went to a
Musk Ox farm, took a boat to Prince William Sound and stayed overnight on an island. Ate a lot of salmon. We toured Denali. At the end of the tour we panned for gold. In Denali took a small plane up to view Mt. McKinley, and in Denali went water rafting.
Mother took a plane to Barrow, the top
Of the world. I declined.

What great memories with my mother to last a lifetime. She was such a good sport.

Peggy Kelm

February 9, 2019

GOD IS IN CONTROL, Mothers most quoted belief was never more evident than in the last 6 months of her life.

From the theft of important things out of her purse at Walmart in July,2018 , which led her to get security cameras Installed showing her carport/sidewalk and kitchen/dining room.
With an app on our phone it allowed us to discover her outside onJanuary 1st.

Other details on the day before her passing showed God is in control.

This poem exemplifies her constant verbal
And heartfelt belief.

By Brenda G. Moon

When it seems you are falling
And the world around you quakes
When it seems like God is stalling
As you pray and simply wait.

It may seem forever
Till He reaches out to you,
But don’t give up on Jesus
He’ll see you through.

For He’s in control
Even when you cannot see,
He knows your every problem,
He sees Your every need.

For all things, there’s a season,
And His timing’s always great,
For you see, when God’s in control,
He will never be too late.

terri Murphy

January 23, 2019

Terri Glass Murphy Irene's youngest daughter.

My greatest memory of my mother that stands is this:
Mother made me go to church every Sunday (a lot of times kicking and screaming).
When our daddy died I was 16 years and I didn’t handle his death well (still heart broken to this day). 75% of my 56yrs of life have been battling drug addiction to self medicate my broken heart.
Had my mother not planted the seed of Jesus and our Heavenly Father I wouldn’t have the faith I have today.
God saved me from addiction because of my mother ❤️

JoAnn DiFrancesco

January 20, 2019

Where do I begin in relaying memories about my mother that I’ve had for 69 years. There is so much that I would like to say but know that I have to limit myself, so I am going to talk about the 5 years that I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to live in my mother’s house from 2008-2012. Mother never was a “pet” kind of person but she absolutely loved my 2 Maltese dogs, Kiwi and Ginger. Anytime I would leave the house and come back Ginger would be in the chair snuggled right next to Mother. Mother just loved “Wheel of Fortune” and I would sit with her every day and watch it and see who would figure out the puzzles first. I convinced her to start an annual Halloween Party in 2008 and she continued that tradition through Halloween 2018. In the years that I lived with her, she also started a tradition of yard decorations for every occasion starting with Valentines, St Patrick’s Day, 4th of July, Thanksgiving, and Christmas which continued throughout 2018. Mother was a strong emotional support for me when a very close friend of mine was diagnosed with cancer. I will miss her every day for the rest of my life and it will be very difficult to accept that I will no longer be getting her phone calls or texts.
I unfortunately took it for granted that she would be with us until she was “100”, so her leaving us at “91” has been a very difficult thing to accept.

Nancy Zion

January 17, 2019

My special memories with you Mother, were April and May,2018 and December, 2018. After Al passed away in April of 2018, you were having a very difficult time and didn’t want to be alone. Everyday on my way home from work for many weeks I spent time with you. You enjoyed it so much as did I. You would talk mostly, and I would listen intently. We would often watch Wheel of Fortune together. When I would have to leave to go home you would always give me big, long hug and tell me how much you really appreciated me coming over and that you loved me. I also told you that I loved you. One Sunday, we were in church at Westoak Woods Baptist Church and they were singing. Everyone was standing but you and I reached over and took your hand so you would stand up with me to sing, and I continued holding your hand during the remainder of the song. God led me to hold your hand because he knew how much you were hurting. I am so thankful that I did that because my heart was always so soft for you, Mother, with you no longer having Al by your side. On Christmas Eve, 2018, we spent a very special time together with Peg when we went to the midnight candlelight service, which you so much enjoyed. You especially loved the song, “O Holy Night”. I asked you, afterward, if you liked the service, and you responded, “ I was blessed”. Afterward, I spent the night with you because I didn’t want you to be alone on Christmas morning. We sat at the table and talked for a while which was wonderful. You told me how your eyelids were drooping and that you were going to have a procedure to have them lifted. I asked you if it affected your vision, and you said it didn’t but that it just looked bad. You always told us that we were your precious daughters and that you loved us with all of your heart. My heart weeps everyday because I miss you so much, Mother. I am happy that you are with Jesus and with Daddy but I am so sad that you are not here anymore with your FOUR PRECIOUS DAUGHTERS

Nancy Zion

January 17, 2019

I love the thank you note that you wrote to me the day after Christmas, 2018, Mother. I didn't get the mail with your thank you note until January 2, 2019, so I didn't have the opportunity to ackowledge it and tell you how much it meant to me, before you left this earth. I love you with all of my heart, too, Mother.

Peggy Kelm

January 17, 2019

I wrote this poem for my mother, Irene Glass, May 27,2001:

When God picked you out
To be my Mother,
He knew I’d want
No other.

He knew I needed your
Love and care,
A sympathetic ear
And a heart so rare.

A friend so devoted
And true,
No other Mother
Would do.

A heritage you have
Passed down,
Love of God and man
Makes you wonderful to be around.

To all, you extend
A helping hand,
To all in need
You do what you can.

You go the extra mile
Wherever the need may be,
With a smile
You’re there tirelessly.

With a willing spirit
And a glad heart,
To others love
You do impart.

Your kind heart and love inside,
In your daughters and
Grandchildren do abide.

Thank you God for giving me,
A gem more precious than gold,
A Mother, Friend, a Treasure Untold.

Peggy Kelm

January 16, 2019

As myself and my 3 sisters, Joann, Nancy, and Terri were going through Mother’s papers on January 4, 2019, my sister, Terri, discovered a letter mother typed in May 12, 1998, my daddy’s birthday. My daddy died in 1979.

It was 2 8x11 typed pages and addressed to “Dear Peggy Sue”.

It started with my birth and went through my life of marriage and as a mother with glowing remarks of love. It was emotional to read because she passed away only 3 days before discovering it , but at the same time so special.

My sister, Nancy, commented that it was the highlight of the day.

Myself and my 3 sisters have spent everyday together since January 1st, and we all believe it was God’s timing that we found this expression of the deep love my mother had for me.

Like my mothers strong desire to climb Mt Fuji in Japan , in that letter she expressed her strong desire and testimony of love for me and her love for all her daughters.

The letter remained in the file cabinet until now and was never mailed. God’s timing never fails.


Thanksgiving 2018 at Glass Ponderosa.
Terri, Nancy, Peggy, Joann and Irene


Jim and Irene’s wedding day July 10, 1945


Irene and Jim Glass, early 1940’s


Nancy and Irene ugly Christmas shirts 2016


Meeting Great-Granddaughter Eva 2007


Meeting Great-granddaughter Simone 2009


Mother, Al, JoAnn, Zach, Kristen, Grayson, Brayden, Matthew, Robin, Eva, and Simone just finished enjoying lunch at the Salt Grass restaurant in Lewisville, TX in 2015.


Mother, Peggy Kelm, and granddaughter/great grandaughter Eva Kelm at Mother’s first Halloween party at her house 2009.


Mother, Peggy Kelm and granddaughter/granddaughter Cara Campos at her high school graduation from Hyde Park School 2012.