Norma Lorene Lally
August 10, 1932 – October 6, 2020
Norma Lorene (Ross) Lally was born on August 10, 1932 in Crawford, Nebraska to Edward Cephus Ross and Maybelle Blanche (Lively) Ross. She was raised by her maternal grandparents, Roy and Alma Lively in Buhl, Idaho. Norma died of natural causes, surrounded by her loved ones, in Spokane, Washington on October 6, 2020 at the age of 88. Norma was married to Robert Edward Lally for 32 years. They had four children: Robyn Carol Rochat (Vancouver, WA), Timothy Jon Lally (Shreveport, LA), Jeffrey Alan Lally (Mountain Home, ID) and Gregory Roy Lally (Spokane, WA). She had five grandchildren and eleven great grandchildren. Norma spent many wonderful years with her partner George Horton Jr., (Las Vegas, NV) and considered him the love of her life. Norma proudly served in the Women in the Air Force (WAF) from 1950 to 1954 attaining the rank of Staff Sergeant. She earned her BA and MA degrees from Boise State University. For much of her adult life she worked as a Public Affairs Officer for the United States Government, retiring in Las Vegas, Nevada and then relocating to Spokane, Washington in 2010. Norma was well traveled, spending time in both Europe and Asia. She was a lifetime member of Marines Memorial Club, The American Legion and Mensa International. She was also a charter member of Women in Military Service of America. Norma was preceded in death by her parents, Edward and Blanche, her half-sister, Mary Ellen, her infant son, Timmy Jon and her life partner, George. At her request, there will be no memorial service. Memorial contributions can be made to the veteran’s charity of your choice. Norma loved and was loved. She will be greatly missed.
- Veteran's charity of your choice
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Norma Lorene Lally
October 15, 2020
“Sometimes the nicest thing you can do for someone else is to let them do something nice for you.” How many times did I hear mom say this? And how many more times I reveled in repeating it back to this woman who found it so much easier to give than to receive!
I was gifted her as my mother-in-law for nearly 23 years, and as a treasured friend and confidant for 19 more. An unconventional “good girl,” mom was all about doing the right thing, but not afraid to try a new thing. Risqué boudoir pictures at 50-something? Check! Celebrating New Year’s at a Portland drag bar with her ex-daughter-in-law? Why not! She loved to dance and party with her friends but was most at home sitting alone on her patio thinking big thoughts, contemplating the mysteries of the universe, sipping her wine and taking thoughtful drags on her long, thin cigarettes, while classical music played in the background. She had a keen mind, a quick wit, and a serious gift of gab!
Mom did love to tell her stories. When I was younger those stories not only wove the tapestry of her life but served as cautionary tales; her robust attempts to ensure I would take lessons from her life and save myself similar pain and heartache. They were also a subtle way of encouraging me to pay homage to those who had come before me and not squander opportunities I would have that they had not.
She also enjoyed one-liners. Some of my daughters’ favorites involved mom’s references to her own laziness…”I’d drive to save myself walking across the street if I could!”
Mom loved fiercely, and with clear vision. Perfection was never the expectation. She accepted the humanity in all of us; do the best you can with what you got, that was her mantra, and as long as you did that you were fine with her. She claimed she could hold a grudge with the best of them, but there was no one better to have in your corner. I’m glad you were in mine, mom. It’s made all the difference. I miss you.
October 12, 2020
This is Travis and his kids, Samantha and Logan, when they visited Mom last year. Mom had asked to see Logan. He was the only one of her great grandchildren she hadn't met.
Photo courtesy of Greg Lally.
October 12, 2020
My favorite memory of my Grandma was sitting out on her back patio at night when it finally cooled down enough from the scorching Las Vegas afternoons, enjoying milk and cookies, and listening to this worldly person, her great perspective on life, her awesome sense of humor, and her endless stories that illuminated my family history in parallel with the times of the world through the years and her own life experiences.
She always had the perfect thing to say about any given topic or situation. Always just the perfect amount of sass and smarts, able to cut through the seriousness to make the perfect point and put things in perspective.
She loved her children but also the ones that were added to the family along the way, like my Dad, like her own. I was so happy she got to meet me my youngest before she passed, even though he was being a hyper little turd at the time. I'll bet she was reminded of those days when her boys were at that age :-)
Everyone in my family adored her, especially all of our ladies ("your grandma is awesome")
Sara ( jeri) LESINA
October 10, 2020
Dearest Aunt Norma:
I am so glad for the times and nice chats we had on the phone when i was my mom ( your sister Mary Ellen) you were so devoted and good to my mother. I enjoyed your stories about my grandmother and when you were a kid. You were a kind Loving Caring person and I have no doubt that you gained your angel wings & flew right on up to the Heavenlies where you were met by passed loved ones and God Almighty!!!
I love you. You will not be forgotton.
RIP dear Auntie!
I shall see you again one day!
October 10, 2020
This face! This is that wry, knowing smile that we loved so much. Gram was a classy lady, but she was also the rock star of grandmas. We always teased her because she smoked (slim cigarettes) and drank (wine) and cursed at other drivers (but only the bad ones). She had so many great stories about growing up a Depression baby and being a woman in the military in the 1950s and raising two crazy boys and an angel (that's you, Aunt Carol). She was smart and funny and fiercely independent (and so very stubborn). She was proud of herself and what she accomplished in her life. I loved that about her. And she was so proud of the people she loved. She would give you that smile and a pat and say, "You done good," and it felt so great that this glam lady you'd looked up to all your life, with all her smarts and stories and success, was proud of you. We love you, Gram, and we were lucky to have you.
October 10, 2020
This is my favorite picture of Mom. It was taken at Red Rock Canyon in Arizona during one of the happiest periods of her life. This is how I want to remember her. We love you, Mom!
October 9, 2020
Love you, Gram! You will live on forever through the many (MANY) stories that you shared with us. The boys already know so many of them and we will continue to tell and retell them until they've heard them as many times as we have. Thank you for leaving so much of yourself with us. You will be missed, but never forgotten.