Nancy Ann Dipoma Russell

April 9, 1948 — April 4, 2014

Nancy Ann Dipoma Russell

Nancy Ann Dipoma Russell passed away April 4, 2014 due to encephalitis. She was born April 9, 1948 in Ogden, Utah to Ray and Ruth Dipoma. Her siblings are Larry, Dewey, Tami Proctor, and Terry. Nancy married Stephen Malan in 1964 and had two sons, Todd and Travis, whose goodness and ambition have always been a source of joy to her. She married Lt Col Stephen Hays Russell, USAF, in the Mesa LDS Temple in 1989 and became a beloved second mother to eight more children. She worked as senior escrow officer at Minnesota Title in Mesa, AZ until a debilitating automotive accident in 1983. Thereafter she discovered an extraordinary talent in fine art. She painted extensively in oils and watercolors including a series of Nauvoo scenes, western and pioneer scenes, and Amish country settings in Pennsylvania. Her talents in tole painting, and elegantly decorating Christmas trees were spectacular. In recent years she has enjoyed doing craft projects with her grandchildren and in making Stampin' Up greeting cards. Nancy had a gift of love, charity, affection and selflessness. She was eager to give hugs to family and friends, to lift the spirits of those suffering misfortune, to shower associates with words of kindness, and thoughtful in gift giving. For many years she put together Easter packages, Valentines Day packages, and Halloween packages to send to nieces, nephews, and grandchildren. Grandchildren often referred to her as "the candy Grandma." Her kind heart, radiant smile, and uninhibited ability to love people endeared her to all who were blessed by her presence. Nancy was blessed with radiant beauty. She had an eye for good fashion and enjoyed an extensive wardrobe. One of her cousins fondly referred to her as "my movie star cousin." She enjoyed collecting recipes, and gourmet cooking. She and Stephen attended the 700 Cooking School for couples in Savannah, Ga. Before her health broke, she delighted in hosting big family dinners that often reflected an Italian flair. Nancy was blessed with a beautiful singing voice. She participated in ward choirs and on occasion would sing solos in sacrament meetings (including a treasured rendition of "Adam-ondi-Ahman.") It was not unusual for Stephen to ask her to sing a Primary song to him in bed after prayers. Nancy was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She magnified every calling. Her positions included Ward Primary Presidencies, counselor in a Stake Primary Presidency, Achievement Days Leader multiple times, den mother, Relief Society Visiting Teacher Coordinator, and Gospel Doctrine teacher to high school seniors. During the year Stephen spent as Visiting Professor at BYU Hawaii, Nancy maintained a high profile with the students and became a beloved fixture on campus. She sang in the BYU Women's Choir, took classes in hula, music, art, and religion, and spoke in a campus devotional. She hosted lonely international students in the Russell home every Sunday night for a family fireside. She was invited by the wife of the University president to be a "mother-mentor" to a struggling student family from Korea with two children to whom Nancy became a life-long "Mom" and "Nancy Grandma." Nancy took so many LDS Institute classes over the years in scripture, doctrine, and Church History that an Institute teacher once told her she had earned a "PhD in Institute." Her copies of the Standard Works are extensively highlighted, cross referenced, and laced with annotating notes and insightful comments to the point that her personal scriptures will be a treasured family heirloom. For many years Nancy and Stephen regularly attended General Conference sessions on Temple Square, the Know Your Religion series, BYU Aspen Grove retreats with BYU Religion teachers as guest speakers, and the annual BYU Education Week. Through these experiences, Nancy developed an enriched testimony of Jesus the Christ and of the blessings of the Restored Gospel, and a profound love for our General Authorities and for Truman G. Madsen. Stephen and Nancy in recent years have toured the world together. Nancy's favorite visits were to Jerusalem and to the Sea of Galilee, to the historic Mormon villages of Chatburn and Downham in England, and to her ancestral homeland of Norway. Nancy leaves a legacy of faith, righteousness, kindness, and service, and love prints on the hearts of her large family. Awaiting reunion are her husband Stephen (North Ogden), children Todd (Scottsdale, AZ), Travis (St. Joseph, MI), Roger (St. George), Greg (Flagstaff, AZ), Heather (Highland), Cheeri (Mesa, AZ), Troy (Henderson, NV), Cameron (Mountain Green), Danica (North Ogden), Joseph (North Ogden), and 43 grandchildren who dearly love their Grandma Nancy. The ultimate purposes of our mortal probation are to make a difference with love and service, to make and keep sacred covenants, and to become what God expects us to become. Nancy Ann Dipoma Russella€"eternal wife, mother, and grandmother succeeded. Families are forever. She wants no empty seats in the home circle of heaven. A memorial service will be held at the North Ogden 8th Ward, 2250 N. Fruitland Drive, on Saturday, April 12, at 11:00 AM. The family requests hugs in lieu of flowers. Condolences may be shared at Serenicare.com
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