Harriet Mattingly, 88, devoted wife, mother and grandma passed away after a brief illness. In the last ten years of her life, she survived a courageous battle with lung cancer, a debilitating stroke, nearly blind with glaucoma and macular degeneration while a caretaker for her Alzheimer’s stricken husband, Jim.
Harriet was born in Stoughton, Wisconsin, on Nov 12, 1923 to Chris and Olga (Larson) Berkins. She grew up as a hard working Norwegian farmer’s daughter and graduated from Stoughton High School in 1941. She met her husband, Jim, who was a Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps stationed at Truax Field, in May of 1945 in Madison, Wisconsin. After a 3-month courtship, they began their 63-year marriage traveling the world over. She was the ideal Air Force spouse supporting her husband and family while constantly moving during his 31-year military career. She made every residence a home for her family and she dearly loved sewing, dancing and golf. However, she was unable to enjoy those pastimes later in life due to declining eyesight. Harriet was also known for the hats she wore to most events and her lively spirit, which continued through Jim’s disease and her own illnesses. She was his loving caregiver until his passing at age 88 in 2007.
She is survived by her son: Chris (Lori) of Colorado Springs; four grandsons: Ian, Christopher (Mary Katherine), Peter and Brian; and three nephews: Charles (Sandy) Truehl of Janesville, Wisconsin, Paul (Lori) Olsen of Stoughton, Wisconsin and Gary (Diana) Sletum of Ohio.
She is predeceased by her parents; her husband: Jim; her daughter: Mary Elizabeth; her brother: Connolly; her sisters: Ruth (and her husband Arnie Slettum) and Elizabeth (and her husband Arnie Peterson); and her nephew: Dwayne Lund.
A memorial service will be held Saturday, March 31st, at 11:00am at St. Luke’s Lutheran Church, 5265 N. Union Blvd. in Colorado Springs. A reception luncheon will follow in Luther’s Hall. Private inurnment. Family members graciously thank the staff at Sunrise at University Park for their loving care of Harriet over the years and Evercare Hospice for their warm and compassionate end of life care. The family was also very comforted by the many prayers of St Luke’s congregation and bedside visits by Pastor Josh and Deaconess Kathy. Chris would also like to thank his REI teammates for their kindness and understanding throughout his mother’s declining health.
In lieu of flowers, memorials in Harriet’s name may be made to the Evercare Hospice Foundation, 5450 Tech Center Drive #120, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80919.