Obituary: Howard, Rose Merry (Cook)

SATURDAY, AUG. 24, 2013

Age 90

HOWARD, Rose Merry (Cook) (Age 90) She arrived with dancing shoes on… October 17, 1922, in Post, Texas, Rose Merry (Cook) Howard was born, eleventh child of twelve, to Thomas J. Cook and Hattie Maie (Lumpkin) Cook.

Rose passed peacefully surrounded by her family on August 19, 2013.

She often said: “I love everybody.”

She did love everybody.

She never met a stranger.

“You can’t get a good Texan down!”

She loved to tell people, “Your skin is soft as cotton.”

And she knew cotton.

Rose Merry and her family did their share of picking in hot fields of Texas.

She put rocks in her cotton sack but sadly it did not fool the right people.

As a teenager Rose moved with her family to southern California where she and her siblings blazed dance floors, famously wearing out a pair of shoes a month.

“I’d rather dance than eat!”

and, she meant it.

Dean Martin, Glenn Miller, Sinatra … and many, many nights at the glamorous Coconut Grove and The Palladium gave Rose thrilling pleasures she savored a lifetime.

“I’ve got you ~ under my skin…” Rose married her great love Beryl (BJ) Howard on October 7, 1947 and was a marvelous wife for 66 years.

Robert James Howard, their son, was the light of her life.

They adored each other enormously.

Throughout her life, other passions were making fabulous meals for family and friends, attending First Methodist Church of Canoga Park and reading and collecting her precious cookbooks.

Rose and Beryl enjoyed being surrounded by friends in West Hills, California until they moved to Spokane, Washington in 1999 to be closer to Robert.

Although Alzheimer’s ultimately left Rose in a different world, it NEVER took her bright, happy smile, or the sparks in her gorgeous, cornflower blue eyes.

Till the end, Rose had an infectious way of making anyone around her feel very special.

What a gift this was.

“There’s a Yellow Rose in Texas, That I am going to see, Nobody else could miss her, Not half as much as me.

And if I ever find her, we nevermore will part.

She’s the sweetest little rosebud that Texas ever knew, Her eyes are bright as diamonds, they sparkle like the dew; the YELLOW ROSE OF TEXAS is the only girl for me.

The starry skies are bright, She walks along the river In the quiet summer night.

And the Yellow Rose of Texas Shall be mine forevermore.”

1955 Mitch Miller Rendition.

Family who love and miss Rose dearly are her devoted husband BJ Howard, adoring son Robert Howard (and Rene Bross), beloved sister Melba Bolatto and brother-in-law Joe Bolatto, Nieces Sue Cook, Linda Cook, Janet Johnson, Nephews Dennis Howard, Ted Howard, and Lori and the entire Decicio family.

Special thanks to staff of Holy Family Hospital for their wonderful care of Rose.

Any tokens of memory for Rose are welcome at the local Inland Northwest Alzheimer’s Association or your favorite charity.

“I stand at your gate and the song that I sing is of moonlight … the Roses are sighing a Moonlight Serenade.”

~ Glenn Miller


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