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1929 Mary 2020

Mary Jean Wixon

May 28, 1929 — August 21, 2020

Mary Jean Wixon, surrounded by lots of love and family, passed peacefully away to Heaven, on August 21, 2020.

Born May 28th, 1929 in Florence, Minnesota to Norwegian immigrants, Edwin and Aagot Riste, Mary Jean was the 6th of 7 children.

Growing up on the farm, she remembered the very day they got electricity. A large light pole was installed in the yard, and they could play outside after dark! She loved the farm and all the animals. She always said that the chickens were her favorite.

In their youth, she and her sisters, Alice, Eva, Hjordes, and Ruth were known as the singing group, the Riste Sisters. They sang at church, county fairs, and in competitions. Their harmonies were beautiful and perfect. Once, the sisters split into 2 separate singing groups for a competition and took both first and second place!

Working in town at her father’s bar and restaurant, she met her husband, Keith Forrest Wixon, when he returned from his tour of duty in the pacific theater during WWII. They were married on September 23, 1949. They later moved to California to be closer to sisters, Eva Burgeson and Ruth Miller-Holt.

Mary was primarily a homemaker and mother to their children, Dennis James & Kirsten Marie. She was very creative and enjoyed doing many things. She loved to sing, play piano and guitar, sew, crochet, tole paint and was an avid, long-time quilter, to name a few. She left behind many precious recordings and handmade mementos for family and friends.

She was a much-loved member of Soldolen Lodge 67 of the Sons of Norway, In Redlands. Celebrating her Norwegian heritage for over 40 years, she was the lodges musician, in charge of the Norwegian music played at meetings and gatherings for over 30 years.

She was a member of the University United Methodist Church in Redlands and served her Lord and her church family for many years. She served as communion steward, rummage sale co-coordinator, attended the Women’s Circle group, 60 plus, the quilters club and served in many other ways.

Mary and husband Keith were passionate square dancers! After Keith’s death, in 2003, Mary returned to square dancing! She made the most wonderful friends and spent the rest of her life dancing with them! A much-loved member of the Riverside Single Swinger’s, she was the “greeter” and gave everyone her infectious smile and a big hug as they arrived at the dances. Daughter Kirsten, called her the “Belle of the ball” and took lots of pictures of her many beautiful outfits that were fitting to every occasion!

Mary is remembered for her kindness to all, her quick-witted sense of humor, sparkling blue eyes and simply wonderful personality. She was preceded in death by her husband, Keith Wixon, Son, Jamie Wixon, her siblings and numerous family and friends. She is survived by daughter, Kirsten Marie, son in love, Russell Landon, many beloved nieces, and nephews who remember her as “the favorite Auntie Mary”, 4 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren who affectionately call her Grammypoo.

We rejoice for her place in paradise with Our LORD Jesus and so many loved ones who have gone on before.


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