Alice Olsen - 1919 - 2019


R. Alice Olsen passed peacefully from this plane to the next, midday, February 9, 2019, at her daughter’s home in Ammon, Idaho. Nearly completed with rehab for a broken pelvis, she suffered a stroke and succumbed six days later, supported by the thorough and caring attention of Hospice of Eastern Idaho.
Born June 19, 1919, in Rooks County, Kansas, the third child of Roy E. and Susie M. Casteel, Alice was approaching her 100th birthday this summer.
In 1942, she met and married Robert M. Olsen of Kansas City, Missouri, just before his Army unit shipped to the Pacific Theater during World War II. After his return and rehabilitation from wounds he received, Bob received his B.S. degree at Kansas University, and the couple’s son, Robert M. Olsen Jr., was born in 1947. They moved San Francisco, where Bob was hired by the Schlage Lock Company and sent to Vancouver, Canada, to establish and operate their Canadian factory. The couple’s daughter, Sharon Kay Olsen, was born there in 1951. Alice enjoyed life in Canada as the factory prospered and she built a warm and nurturing home. Bob became seriously ill in 1960, arising from his Army service. Alice shifted her focus to lead the family’s relocation to Amity, Oregon, to use the Veterans’ Administration Hospital in Portland and to benefit from the support of her parents and two of her siblings living in Amity.
Her beloved husband passed in 1965. In a few years, she took a job proctoring study hall at Amity High School. Then she enrolled at Oregon College of Education (now Western Oregon University), earning a B.S. and the M.S. in audiology and speech pathology. After graduation, she joined Carlton Elementary School working with children until she complained that the paperwork demands of the new 94-142 federal law took too much time away from her direct contact with her students. She became deeply involved in Eastern Star and its related Rainbow Girls organization, acting as Mother Advisor for 14 years. During this time, she oversaw the addition of an apartment to the Amity home, as well as construction of a duplex on the adjacent lot. She was elected to a state leadership position in Eastern Star, researched, applied and received her membership in the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), studied painting, and excelled in her Toastmistress membership.
Alice was a frequent and positive presence in the lives of her grandchildren, Ryan, Kyle, and Tyler, Bob Jr’s. sons, and Amy, Sherry’s daughter. As she began to age and slow (more slowly than her contemporaries), she moved into supported living communities in McMinnville and then Idaho Falls. She was renamed "GG" by her six great-grandchildren. Eventually, she moved in with Sherry and greatly enjoyed helping the great-granddaughters with their homework. She remained mentally curious and active to the very end. She was widely connected to relatives and friends via the Internet. She was enrolled in and studying an online college course in U.S. history at the time of her passing. She had researched and catalogued more than 150 relatives on the Ancestry website. Alice had a profound, if often subtle, impact on those who came into her life, and she left many, many joyful, often thoughtful, memories. She left a family of people far beyond her blood relatives.
The family suggests any remembrances be directed to a local hospice group. Cremation is being managed by Wood Funeral Home East Side in Ammon. Small celebrations of life in both Ammon and Amity are anticipated at later dates.



Alice was my Mother Advisor in Rainbow when I was in high school. She was a very special woman, filled with love and understanding. I learned a lot from her over the years. Alice was like a mother to me and I thank her for that. I saw her a few times throughout my life and it was always a heartwarming experience. She was a wonderful woman and I am blessed she was a part of my life. She will live on through the ones she touched. Sending my love to Alice's family..


One generation comes and another passes away, but the Earth abides forever.

she was a special woman.

- Larry Caldwell

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