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ROMA EMOGENE (TUENGE) BERNADETTE LOVATO
“And calling together the multitude with his disciples, he said to them: If any man will follow me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross and follow me.” Mark 8:34
Roma Emogene (Tuenge) Lovato was born at Rawlins, Wyoming on May 13, 1928 and passed into the Kingdom of Heaven at home on December 31, 2022 with her grandson Justin Perkins and granddaughter Carrie Ann Lovato at her sides. She was committed, dedicated, empathetic, talented, understanding and Mom.
She was committed to her husband of 68 years, her 11 children and their families. Her upbringing and life events were key in Roma’s ability to deny herself and “do” for the good of others. God gave her the necessary graces to combat everything with prayer and sacrifice. As a dedicated Roman Catholic the Rosary was her weapon. When asked how she dealt with the joys, trials, and sufferings in her life she said, “God was my first love,
I endured everything for Him. I offered it up.” She did what the Lord asked in Mark 8:34.
Born to Otto and Emma Tuenge, Roma was the only daughter of three children. She was the apple of her Dad’s eye and had many beautiful memories of their time together. One memory that stuck with her was at about age six while shoe shopping (hers were lightly worn), they saw a young girl with worn out shoes. Roma was empathetic to the need and agreed with her dad on buying that little girl new shoes instead herself. Talented in dance and music, she performed intermissions at the Rawlins Theatre. Roma and her mom spent summers at family ranches in Montana and Nebraska helping her grandmother with daily chores, cooking, serving hired help, and helping her uncle with ranching
After Roma’s parents passed, she lived with her Uncle and his family at Gallatin Gateway, Montana where she attended 5th – 8th grade at the one-room Little Bear School. She admired her teacher because she had to know a great deal to teach grades K-8: noting she learned to respect others differences and the knowledge of her teacher. After graduating high school in Grand Island, Nebraska Roma entered the Saint Joseph Catholic Hospital Nursing School at Grand Island, Nebraska and graduated 3rd in her class on June 2, 1949. Roma remembered as a nursing student taking care of patients suffering from Polio that had to use the Iron Lung, and that while caring for a pediatric patient she brought her record player in because the patient loved western music.
After graduating from nursing school, while visiting family in Rawlins, she met her husband, Robert Lovato. Roma took marriage preparation classes at St. Joseph Catholic Church and was Confirmed and Married at the same on September 18, 1949. Their first child was born in March of 1951 and the last in September 1969. Roma committed herself to being a wife and mother, and when possible, would read the American Journal of Nursing to stay up-to-date with medical trends and practices. In the 70s having to take a nursing refresher course or lose her license Roma passed and was hired by Mercy Medical Center in Nampa, Idaho where she was as a float, pediatric, and charge nurse. Roma, her husband and youngest daughters moved to Portland, OR where she worked at Mercy Medical Hospital; however, family events led them to move to Cheyenne where she was hired by St. Vincent DePaul Hospital. She was voted Nurse of the Year because of her compassion toward suffering babies. Roma retired from nursing in 1995. She and her husband moved to Clearmont, Wyoming, built a log cabin and helped their son Michael with ranching.
Since leaving Clearmont in 2013, Roma lived in Artesia, NM; Chandler, AZ and returned to Cheyenne in 2020. Her great-grandsons Gabriel, Samuel, and Paul entertained, read to, played games with, and graciously offered her many creative foods. As she became ill, her grandson Justin, his wife Rachel and Roma’s granddaughter Hanah tended mercifully to her.
Some of her favorite memories were being room-mother in multiple classrooms at her children’s’ elementary schools. She was known as the ‘best treat lady’ at school carnivals and performance programs: her cakes, cupcakes and other treats were always homemade, perfectly decorated and the most sought after. Also, known as the ‘Popcorn Lady’, once a month she would pop, bag and distribute popcorn to students.
Roma was a creative cook, baker, seamstress, playmate, Brownie and Girl Scout Leader, foot-massager and was very resourceful around the house making clothes patterns of newspaper, crochet hooks of toothbrushes, Barbie Doll clothes of socks and leftover fabric. Through Roma’s encouragement, example and opportunities she provided her kids were well-rounded in academics, art and music; due to influence her son John is a Certified Public Accountant, she encouraged her son Anthony’s interest in science by buying him science and electronics kits - became an Electronic Engineer. Roma’s love for ranch life rubbed off on her son Michael who came to be a Rancher. Her daughters Judene and Roma are trained in home health, her youngest daughter is a K-12 educator; and eight of her grandchildren were influenced by her compassion and encouragement to get into nursing or other health care and medical professions. And that’s just family – who knows what effect she had on others.
She is preceded in death by her parents, brothers Otto Jr., and Verner Tuenge; her husband Robert “Bob” Lovato; sons Robert “Otto” and Ernest “Ernie” Lovato; daughters Mary Robin Romero and Mary Bernadetta Lovato; grand-daughter Audre’ Audiss and her son.
She is honorably remembered by her sons Anthony (Paula) Lovato of Phoenix, AZ; Michael (Linda) Lovato of Laramie, WY; John (Denine) Lovato of Chandler, AZ; her daughters, Judene Buck of Portland, OR; Roma Audiss of Rapid City, SD; Aurmelia Decker of Cheyenne, WY, and Ana Lovato of Artesia, NM.
Roma is lovingly thought of by 28 grandchildren, 36 great-grandchildren and 6 great-great grandchildren.
Friday, April 21, 2023
6:00 - 6:45pm (Mountain time)
Schrader Aragon and Jacoby Funeral Home
Saturday, April 22, 2023
11:00 - 11:00am (Mountain time)
St. Mary's Cathedral
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