Audrey Corrine Halmrast, 84 years, went home to be with her Lord and Savior on Palm Sunday, April 5, 2020.
She was born on December 2nd, 1935, in Joplin, Missouri to Herman and Mattie Sill. She was the eighth of nine children. She attended Carl Junction schools excelling in her studies and was a Bulldog cheerleader and drum majorette for the H.S band.
Audrey married Lester Dale Halmrast on August 6, 1952. Les and Aud fell in love when she was visiting her brother, Gerald Sill, in the Air Force boot camp. She brought home-made fudge and Les got a taste of that fudge and it was all over. Before Les left for his first Air Traffic Controller assignment in England, he headed straight to Missouri to marry that beautiful Audrey.
Mattie Sill, Audrey’s mother, drove them over the Missouri border to Arkansas with little brother Carroll Arthur in tow. They found a preacher to marry them in the middle of the night. The ceremony took place on the front porch, the preacher in his bathrobe and bare feet.
Within six months Audrey joined Les in England where they started their family, two standard poodles, a parakeet, and a few years later their first born, Rhonda Sue. What a whirlwind!
Leaving England behind, Audrey and Les moved on to Biloxi, MS, where Brenda was born as well as a litter of poodles, Mitzi and Jaja.
Julie was born while the family was living in Knobnoster, MO. This was a short stay before on to a vacation home on a canal in Michigan. Audrey fried lots of fish caught from our own little pier. Audrey was known for her desserts, home-made cinnamon rolls, wonderful pies, cream puffs, cakes, cookies, and don’t forget the fudge. Life was grand when Les was home, lots of good food and family fun.
Clark AFB Philippines was a beautiful base at the next stop and Audrey and Les enjoyed the swimming pool, horseback rides, playing golf and entertainment at the NCO club. Living off base with the Filipino people was an exciting unique experience.
Upstate NY was gorgeous with a full four seasons. Audrey loved the drives through the countryside on Sunday afternoons. Kevin was born on May 5, 1965, during this assignment in Plattsburgh. He was the first Halmrast boy and the apple of Audrey’s eye.
Audrey was a Girl Scout leader when Les was stationed at Itazuke AFB, Japan, and they took the girls, along with family, camping at Hakata Beach and visited many beautiful sites in Japan.
There were numerous other moves after Les retired from the USAF until they settled in Centralia Missouri.
Audrey is survived by her son, Kevin Dale Halmrast, daughters; Rhonda Sue (Halmrast) Lebron, Brenda Lea (Halmrast) Lee, Julie Dawn (Halmrast) Frane, five grandchildren, Tristan Keith Platner, Amanda Grae Platner, Erik Shane Platner, Benjamin Barrett Lebron, Robert Karsten Lee and one great grandchild, Gabriel Christopher Platner. She is also survived by one brother, Carroll Arthur Sill of Carl Junction, Mo.
Audrey loved her husband Les and her family and devoted her life to them. She especially loved her grandchildren and great grandchild and cherished their visits. They called her grandma. The life of a military wife with four children took strength, courage, and much family support. There were always family dogs, her last was her favorite, Heather, an English Cream Retriever. She enjoyed baking, sewing, knitting, reading, crossword puzzles, and stained glass and found ways to give to others through her hobbies. Her special gift of decorating was evident in how she was able to make any place warm and inviting….home.
In an uncertain and sometimes scary world, she was a safe space for her grandchildren. Always for them a smile on her face. Even through her truths and sass there was always a twinkle in her eye and a hug in her arms. To be loved in life is life’s greatest gift, she gave us all that gift.
The family extends a special thank you to the staff at The Windsor House in Lawrence, Kansas, for spoiling her and taking the best care we could ever imagine during her stay.
There will be a Celebration of Life for the family with date to be determined in the future. Should you wish to send cards and condolences to the family please send to: Ms. Brenda Lee
1400 River Ridge Rd. Lawrence, KS 66044.