She was the third of four children born to Mabel and Edward Bell.
Her high school yearbook described her as, “Here are sweetness, character and leadership ability combined to make a lovely girl.”
Indeed, she was.
She was born in Broderick, Saskatchewan on her grandparent’s farm and lived her early years in northern Minnesota.
There she remembered traveling by horse drawn sleigh in the winter with heated bricks placed under her feet.
Her family later moved to Everett, Washington where at Everett High Corinne was the valedictorian of her graduating class, as well as “Best All Around Girl,” and where they called her Corkybell, all one word.
In high school she was a track star.
She said that she could still hear the cheers of “HERE SHE COMES!
HERE SHE COMES!”
as she pulled ahead of her opponents on the last leg of relay races.
Corinne was blessed with two great loves in her life.
While attending Washington State College, she met James Delbert Allen on a blind date.
They were married in 1940 and enjoyed a happy and charmed marriage until Del died of cancer.
She later married Kenneth R. Patton, and they had a wonderful life together until he passed away.
Although principally a devoted homemaker, for a period of time Corinne was the receptionist for Doctors Rheva and William Myhre.
Again working outside the home, she served as trusted companion/ caretaker for Mrs. Louis Davenport of the Davenport Hotel.
The two of them lunched together daily in the hotel and afterward tended to the day’s tasks.
She volunteered in the schools, served as Boy Scout and Camp Fire Girls leader, coordinated neighborhood canvassing for United Way, March of Dimes and the Cancer Society.
Active in the YWCA, she served on their board.
She and a friend started up the Y’s Buys shop, a boutique at the YWCA which helped support Y programs.
Corinne loved walking, yoga classes and exercise programs.
She enjoyed lifelong friends in a group dubbed “Stitch.”
These women met and stitched for decades, and almost certainly Corinne was the last in the group to survive.
She never complained.
Although ravaged by arthritis, she was always “just fine.”
Kindness, strength, resilience and a quiet feistiness combined to make up her essence.
When Corinne recognized a child in need, her heart opened and her arms stretched wide to reach that child.
One of them, now an adult, says that she couldn’t have made it without Corinne’s love.
Corinne was predeceased by her husbands, Del Allen and Ken Patton, her brother, Ronald Bell, and sister, Vivian Johnson.
She remains cherished by her children, Mike Allen (Trudy) and Patty Davis (Walter).
Other loving survivors are her brother, Edward Bell (Joanna), her grandchildren, Rebecca Fischer (Chad), Jeff Allen (Jessica), Molly Davis (Jay Augsburger), Tim Allen (Ana), and Gretchen Davis DeSarno (James), along with 11 great grandchildren and one due in March.
Her family extends a heartfelt thank you to the caregivers at Touchmark.
Also, they give a special thank you to Ronda, a wonderful friend to Corinne, and to the caregivers at Hospice House, who made her last seven days of life as lovely as possible.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Anna Ogden Hall, 2828 W. Mallon, Spokane, WA 99201.
A brave girl jumps from the rocks on the west side of Tubbs Hill as her two friends watch. (Don Sausser/Facebook photo)
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