Doris Korb Pence
Doris Pence finished her story on Wednesday April 20th. That story began in 1927 and is told in several parts.
The first part began with her birth in Warren; a small town in northwestern Pennsylvania that has become only smaller since. Her father worked in a gear factory during the early days of the depression, and when that factory closed her family lost their home and began an Odyssey out west in hopes of better times. Eventually those times improved, but not enough for her family to buy a home again until she was off and on her own.
The trip out west - living with her parents and brother in an old Essex automobile - became central to the story of her childhood. The breakdowns, the handouts, the kindnesses and hardships were the tales she used to describe herself when eventually she had children of her own to tell.
Then came the war that claimed the life of the man she expected to marry, service as a telephone operator and then listening in while General Eisenhower called home to describe the progress of D-Day. Eventually, and soon after the war, she lived in Denver and worked with the chamber of commerce planning festivities to welcome the very first jet to Stapleton Airport. She heard the announcer calling out to a large and expectant crowd – a full hour before the jet arrived - “Here it comes… and there, there… there it goes,” and hearing a loud chorus of general disappointment that a jet was so fast it couldn’t even be seen.
Then she moved back to Reno, Nevada and met George, the man who would become her husband of more than sixty years. Together they moved to Susanville, California and eventually had a son, also named George, and a daughter named Donna. Together, George and Doris became a couple that really mattered in their community; working to build better schools, a new church, better community services and a local economy that would support prosperity and growth.
They too prospered, building a larger home for a growing family and acquiring a cabin for summer outings. Each succeeding venture featured them both, working together on every project that made life better for their children and their neighbors.
Eventually they moved to accept new roles in places like Sacramento, Salt Lake City, Amman, Jordan and Whispering Pines, North Carolina. Every place they lived was better for it. No place they called home failed to improve and bear the mark of their efforts to be good parents, good neighbors, good friends and good citizens.
Doris is survived by her children, George and Donna, both of Salt Lake City, their spouses, Glenda and Paul, her sister Nathalie and nine grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Mass will be celebrated on Monday, May 2, 2022 at 11:00 am at St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church, 1375 Spring Lane, Salt Lake City.