Doris Verna Dirks Jantz

Doris Verna Dirks Jantz was born the youngest of ten children, to Enoch and Hannah (Koehn) Dirks in Durham, Kansas, on May 16, 1929. She peacefully passed away on June 11, 2024, at the age of 95. Funeral Services were held today at Mountain View Mennonite Church.

Mom spoke of the golden days of childhood and attended Red Top and Pleasant Valley elementary schools. In 1937, she moved with the family caravan to Bonners Ferry. After moving a few times, the family settled at Cow Creek on a little farm. It had a footbridge to a garden and a water house above the creek for cream and milk and butter, which she always remembered. Later their home became what was called the Abe Dirks place where Terry Johnsons live now. She finished her elementary education at Cow Creek School. Mom attended church with others of the fledgling congregation in homes or school. After four weeks of Revivals, she gave her heart to the Lord and was baptized on February 7, 1943, my Minister Isaac Toews.

During World War II, Ervin Jantz had his eye on her and waited until after the war and home from Conscientious Objector camps until she turned 18. They were married on June 15, 1947, by Minister Ernest Dirks in Bonners Ferry. Mom was ever Dad’s queen. Their honeymoon was up to Alberta to take her father to Revivals and then back through Glacier Park to a little rented log cabin with their parents’ gifts of bedding and a cow.

Eventually they purchased the Ed Gross place on the North Bench, where Mom learned to drive their Model A Ford coupe in the fields. Those fields had to be opened up by saw, dynamite, hired bulldozer and picking up sticks. Always, Mom served three meals a day on time. Meals for hay boys and Dad’s friends, neighbors, and, of course, family and for Sunday company kept her busy.

When Dad was ordained into the deaconry in 1958, Mom took on the role of supportive wife with meals, counsel and visits. In the middle of this they raised us six children with an atmosphere of structure and a feeling of predictability and, most of all, a feeling of love and security.

Throughout her life, Mom is remembered as quiet, gentle and wanting to avoid all conflict or passing judgement. She was a peacemaker. In situations that arose, she took the hopeful approach and would say something like, “Oh well, it will mostly likely turn out ok!”

Mom rose early with the birds, being a bit of a songster herself. She noticed nature and found contentment in a simple and steady life, mostly close to home, always there when we came home from school, with some snack ready. She kept a tidy house and organized our lives.

Dad and Mom moved to Sunset Home Assisted Living in 2013 and after a year, Dad passed away. Mom kept her lifelong interest in nature, books and people who crossed her quiet path as she journeyed, keeping the faith to the end. She endeared herself to people by her quick wit and simple happiness and acceptance. We will miss her listening ear and hopeful nature.

She is preceded in death by both parents, all her siblings, her husband, and 31 brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law. Left to remember her are her four daughters: Delores of Bonners Ferry, Phyllis and Gilbert Toews of Heart Valley, Alberta, Virginia and Kenneth Unruh of Bonners Ferry, Juanita of Bonners Ferry; sons James and wife Judy of Ontario, Oregon, and Andrew and wife Gayla of Grandview, Idaho; 22 grandchildren and 28 great grandchildren; many nieces and nephews, friends, and especially the residents of Sunset Home, and all the workers, to whom we give special thanks for all their gentle and loving care.