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Deborah Katie Piper


1948 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Deborah Katie Piper Obituary
Piper, Deborah Katie
67, of Princeton, IL passed away on April 18, 2016 at her home with her family by her side. Born in Exeter, NH on September 15, 1948 to Philip J. and Mary E. (Small) Whelan, she married Rex M. Piper on June 26, 1971. Deborah's early education was in England, where she remembered lining the streets to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. She graduated from Cortez High School of Phoenix, AZ in 1966. Deciding to become a nurse, she entered the Walter Reed Army Institute of Nursing, affiliated with the University of Maryland. Deborah graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 1970 and was commissioned a First Lieutenant in the U.S. Army, serving until 1973. Deborah met her future husband soon after beginning duty at Fort Polk, LA. They were married at Luke Air Force Base Chapel in Phoenix, when both were Captains. Rex and Deborah were the first couple in the Bureau County Republican to have both the bride and groom's pictures included in the engagement announcement. She worked as a nurse in the obstetrics unit at Perry Memorial Hospital for 27 years and retired from the Bureau County Health Department WIC in 2013. She was a member of St. Louis Parish and enjoyed bridge, travel, laughter and conversation, and spending time with her friends and family. Deborah is survived by her husband, Lt. Colonel Rex Piper; her sons, Eric (Emily) of Westford, MA, Mark (Marcia) of St. Louis, MO, Kyle of Princeton, and Jay of Princeton; two grandchildren, Cora and Owen; her parents of Phoenix; a sister, Elizabeth of Glendale, AZ; and two brothers, Phil (Darlene) Whelan of Phoenix and Dr. Jeffery (Jill) Whelan of Austin, TX. She is also survived by three sisters-in-law, Renee Stuepfert of LaMoille, IL, Rita (Bruce) Placek of Princeton, and Robyn (Jay Jordan) Piper of Del Mar, CA; and many nephews and nieces. She was preceded by her grandparents and her brother, John Whelan; a brother-in-law, John Gordon Stuepfert, and her mother-in-law, Alberta Piper. A memorial visitation will be from 4pm to 7pm, Friday, April 22 at the Norberg Memorial Home in Princeton. A Mass of Christian Burial will be at 11:30am, Saturday, April 23 at St. Louis Catholic Church in Princeton with Father Jeffrey D. Stirniman officiating. Burial will follow at Oakland Cemetery in Princeton. Arrangements are being handled with Norberg Memorial Home, Inc. in Princeton Illinois Online condolences may be left at www.norbergfh.com Memorials may be directed to St. Louis Catholic Church or to a food pantry of the giver's choice.
Published in The Arizona Republic on Apr. 21, 2016
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