Mildred Marth

SEATAC, Wash.

Mildred Annette Marth, 100, died peacefully in her sleep on the morning of Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, at SeaTac, Washington.

Born Nov. 18, 1914, in Crothersville, she was the daughter of George Washington Scifres and Nellie Patrick Scifres, both of whom preceded her in death. Her mother and baby brother, Kenneth, both died during the flu epidemic of 1918. On June 17, 1949, at her Aunt Pat’s house in Crothersville, she married Thomas J. Marth who also preceded her in death.

She was raised by family friends who later adopted her (the Brown family) after her father entered the U.S. Army during World War I.  When her father returned from the war, he married Mable Owens. She then went back to live with her father and a new loving mother. She soon became a big sister to Helen and Roweta.   

Mildred graduated from Shields High School and went to Indiana University School of Nursing after working a short time in a shoe factory. Her father was a medic during the war which had piqued her interest in medicine. In 1942, she continued her education at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. In 1947, she completed her education at Indiana University with a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing, majoring in public health and education.

She decided to enter the U.S. Army Air Corps as first lieutenant in January 1943 to help with the war effort.  After enlisting, she was sent to Bowman Field in Louisville, Kentucky, to enter the first class for flight nurses. Her training at Bowman Field consisted of classes in the School of Air Evacuation and Air Evacuation of Patients programs along with parachute training.  After training at Bowman Field, she was assigned to Edmonton, Alberta, where she began serving as a flight nurse bringing back wounded troops from the Pacific Theater.

While attending a wedding reception in Edmonton, Alberta, she met her future husband. They corresponded throughout the war and during the beginning of the rebuilding of Germany where he had been stationed. After their wedding, the couple moved to Miami where he enrolled at the University of Miami, studying for his Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering. She worked at several hospitals and did public health work as a registered nurse until he graduated.

After his graduation, they moved to Denver to search for new jobs and start raising a family. Upon arriving in Denver, they both were hired on the first day of their job searches. He was hired by the city of Denver while she was hired by Denver Visiting Nurse Association. Mildred worked for various hospitals and did public health nursing, finishing her career as a charge nurse in nursing homes about 1975.

While in Denver, Mildred who had become Mickey to her dad, Millie to her friends and “honey bear” to her husband had two beautiful children, Stephen Christian Marth in 1953 and Mary Elaine Marth Thomas in 1956. Both of her children survive.

After raising her children while living in Castle Rock, Colorado, Atlanta, southern California and Seattle, Millie and Thomas enjoyed their retirement years living at their home in Castle Rock during the summers and at their home in Federal Way, Washington, during the winters. 

Millie cared for her husband after he developed progressive dementia which began in 1997. She took care of him until she was no longer able to properly handle the increasing responsibilities of his health care in late 1998. 

Thomas died May 25, 1999, in Burien, Washington. Millie lived at home in Burien on her own until she was 99 years old. After a fall, she had to have caregivers during the day to help her, and in 2014 she required 24-hour help. In the spring of 2015, yet another fall caused her to break her pelvis which required rehab for a month. Upon completing that rehab, she moved to a loving, supportive, caring adult family home in SeaTac, where she lived the remainder of her life.

Other survivors include five grandchildren, four great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Besides her parents, brother and husband, she was preceded in death by two sisters, Helen Bernice Waldkoetter and Roweta Kay Smith.

The funeral mass was conducted at St Francis of Assisi Church in Burien. She was buried at Tahoma National Cemetery in Kent, Washington, with military honors.