Cover photo for Lavon I Rasmussen Hirsch's Obituary
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1932 Lavon 2024

Lavon I Rasmussen Hirsch

July 31, 1932 — April 15, 2024

Lavon Irene Rasmussen Hirsch was born July 31, 1932 outside Hurley, South Dakota. She talked often and dearly about having the most wonderful parents, Alfred C. Rasmussen and Francis Irene Wilson Rasmussen. She was born the 5th of 6 children and lived on their farm in South Dakota where she was born, until the family made a big move across the county to Longview, Washington. Lavon loved living in Longview and even after traveling the world, said it was her favorite place, and the most beautiful. The family move to Longview was in 1941 when she was 9 years old. Lavon attended St. Helen’s, Kessler Elementary, and RA Long High School from where she graduated in 1950.

Lavon was a very active member of the community all of her life. She led Cub Scout, and Campfire troops, was President of the PTA, drove a strawberry picking bus, and joyfully babysat her nieces and nephews. She was a loving and devoted mother, who supported her children actively and loved to spend time with them.

Lavon, along with her husband, became even more involved with their passion for dancing. She loved and knew how to dance so gracefully. The waltz, two step, and others were still practiced in her kitchen in the years before her passing. The couple joined Ruff and Ruffles Square Dance Club cultivating a large, loving circle of lifelong friends. They enjoyed spending time together, were awarded the prestigious Parker Award and presented with the President's Cup for their outstanding achievements and dedication to square dancing. She maintained an active lifestyle, enjoyed working in her yard, and was an avid adventurer when you would least expect it. She talked about going sky diving as she neared 90 years old. She seemed fearless and was very courageous. She was a skilled seamstress and did upholstery. She knew a lot about construction and worked on sites, sweeping and helping with the projects. She could be spontaneous and would catch you by surprise agreeing to go on an amusement ride or road trip at the last minute. Along with spontaneity, she was organized, a planner, and built a career in the insurance industry beginning at State Farm, and then moving to Bell Insurance Agency in Kelso, Washington where she worked for many years as an insurance representative. After retiring from insurance, she utilized her talents as the bookkeeper for Hirsch Construction. She was very intelligent, a hard worker, and reliable.

After her husband’s passing, Lavon and her sister, Ramona, selected a lot and had a home built where they lived together for 18 years. The two sisters attended events, traveled, enjoyed each other’s company and grew closer. She was a beloved aunt and great aunt. Ramona's children cherished their Aunt Lavon, who became an important part of her sister’s family, developing very close and adoring relationships. They felt the privilege of spending time with her and lovingly referred to her as Aunt Bon, Aunt Lavon, or Auntie.

During this time in her life, she continued to be active, participating in exercise classes, the Cowlitz County Old Time Music Association, volunteering for coffee duty at rest stops, participating in dance club activities, and more. Seeing her consistent, welcoming smile, and hearing her say ‘that sounds like fun, let’s go,’ reflected her kind energy and loving spirit. The world and our lives were touched in a beautiful way by her. She was caring, compassionate, and incredibly generous. She was a quietly confident, strong woman. Lavon traveled the world, always ready to go, and loved to experience life. She visited all 50 states, all 7 continents, and circumnavigated the earth in one trip. Back in the US, she was working towards her goal to visit all the national parks and was nearly finished. She passed away at home on April 15, 2024, 25 years to the day after her dear husband Norm, and will be loved in memory forevermore. She was 91.

Lavon was preceded in death by her parents, husband Norm, son Mark, and 4 brothers and sisters: Alfred Cleo, Verdell, Roger, and Virginia.

She is survived by her children, Valerie Hirsch of Kent, Washington, her son, Dale Hirsch, sister, Ramona Payder, grandchildren, Nikolaus and Benjamin, 4 great grandchildren, 21 nieces and nephews, and extended family in Hawaii, Belgium, and Canada.

Her family is honoring her with a private service.

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