Obituary of Elizabeth Marie Bice Thom
Elizabeth Marie Bice Thom (Liz) was born in Faribault, MN on January 12, 1945 to Orville and Oletta Halvorson Bice. She was a 1963 graduate of Medford High School in Medford, MN and a 1966 RN graduate from Methodist-Kahler School of Nursing in Rochester, MN. She died on Wednesday, January 5, 2022 at Essentia Moose lake Hospital from metastatic colon cancer. Her hope was that through this challenge, she might meet it head-on with grace and dignity, leaning on her Lutheran faith for strength. She was appreciative of all the Prayer Warriors that supported her. She hoped to make this world a better place for others, leading by example.
She loved music, singing in general and youth choirs in particular. She organized and directed the SonRise Singers in Cromwell whose members decided to practice at the Thom house every Sunday night…for 3 years. It was wonderful! She also helped direct the A to J (Addicted to Jesus) singers from Cromwell and Floodwood. Christian education was important to her as such she was a Sunday School teacher, Sunday School superintendent and Vacation bible School leader for churches in St. Peter, Cromwell, Wright and Floodwood. She mentored teens through leadership in VBS, especially at Hope Lutheran Church in Floodwood. For ten years she directed the annual Christmas Cantata in Cromwell.
Wayne and Liz met in Virginia, MN at an FFA-FHA (Future Farmers of America-Future Homemakers of America) leadership camp. Fortunately, their homes were “only” 40 miles apart when they started dating. They were married October 1, 1966 in Faribault, MN and have been blessed with three sons. The family spent 11 years in St. Peter before relocating to Cromwell in 1979 for Wayne’s work. In addition to raising a family, Liz was able to experience the many opportunities of a nurse. She was a hospital and recovery room nurse in St. Peter and Mankato, MN for one year, school nurse in Cleveland, MN and Cromwell, MN for a total of 15 years; a clinic nurse in St. Peter, MN for 5 years and for a short time after “retirement” with Dr. Shawn Bode, Cromwell, MN; Carlton County Public Health Home Care nurse for 21 years and concurrently a lead nurse for Immunizations, Disease Prevention and Control, Early & Periodic Screening, School Health, Jail Health, Abstinence Education for a total of 21 years. Liz was honored to be awarded the Betty Hubbard Award for her work in improving children’s dental health. The culmination of Liz’s work was the Community Health Information Collaborative (CHIC) to implement the Minnesota Immunization Information Registry (MIIC). She felt this registry to be one of the most important impacts in her nursing career.
Outside of work, Liz loved to quilt, sing and read. Along with 2 other retired nurses, the Prairie Lake Book Club was formed. She learned to quilt from the “church basements ladies” at Hope Lutheran and joined the Cromwell Quilt Guild.
She was preceded in death by her parents; daughter-in-law, Mary Thom; sister-in-law, Joyce Thom; and parents-in-law, Gordon and Dolores Thom.
Liz is survived by her husband of 55 years, Wayne; children, David (Lori), Tim (Bonnie) and Michael (Lisa); grandchildren, Matthew, Alyssa, Robert, Sean, Jacob, Adam and Elle; step grandchildren, Shaylah McGhee, Kaitlyn McGhee, and Steven McGhee; great-grandchild, Albert Gunder; brother, Norbert (Gen) Bice; and other beloved sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends.
Her family extends heartfelt thanks to Dr. Daniel Nikcevich and the oncology team at Essentia Moose Lake and the Hospice teams, who made her last few months at home comfortable.
Visitation: 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 12, 2022 in Atkins Northland Funeral Home, 801 14th Street, Cloquet. Visitation will continue from 10:00 a.m. until the 11:00 a.m. funeral service on Thursday, January 13, 2022 in Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, 515 Skyline Blvd, Cloquet. A luncheon will follow the service in the church fellowship hall. Burial will be in Forest Hill Cemetery in Cromwell in the spring. Arrangements entrusted to Atkins Northland Funeral Home. To sign the guest book and leave an online tribute, see www.atkinsnorthlandfuneralhome.com.