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Carol Jean (Dahlbacka) Stempihar


October 23, 2018

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. - Carol Jean (Dahlbacka) Stempihar, 69, passed away peacefully on Oct. 19, 2018, with the sun shining on her in Scottsdale.

Carol was born on March 16, 1949, to Arne and Eldora Dahlbacka, and grew up in Ironwood, Mich., where she formed life-long friendships and graduated from Ironwood High School. After attending Gogebic Community College and Northern Michigan University, Carol began working at Wakefield Central School as an elementary teacher. On Aug. 19, 1978, she was united in marriage to Thomas Stempihar.

Carol and Tom built a beautiful life together with a home and four sons in Bessemer, Mich. She resigned from her teaching career to focus her time on what was her proudest title, Mom. She dedicated so much of her life to raising her four boys, was actively involved in Sharon Lutheran Church, the schools and the community. Her grandchildren brought her so much joy, and they felt her love.

She had a love for dogs, dancing and desserts, and to everyone who knew her, Carol was beautiful, genuine and kind. She lived her life with strength and courage, and her big smile left a lasting impression on anyone who met her.

Carol is survived by her four sons: Jeff (Jaime), Scottsdale; Scott (Jill), Superior, Wis .; Bradley, Eagle, Colo .; Steven, Scottsdale; five grandchildren: Grant, Landon and Averly, Scottsdale; Sam and Reese, Superior.

She is also survived by her sister, Arlene (Bill) Zuck, and brother, John Dahlbacka; brothers-in-law, John (Dorothy) Stempihar and Ron (Karen) Stempihar; sister-in-law, Marilyn (Lee) Fassett; numerous nieces and nephews, cousins, many close and treasured friends, and communities who loved, admired, respected and cared for her.

We are grateful for the many years we had her here with us and will miss her smile, her hugs, her care and kindness, but we are joyous and celebrating as we know she is now dancing with the love of her life, Tom, in Heaven, surrounded by her parents, her father- and mother-in-law, and others who have gone before her. It gives our hearts great comfort to know they are together watching as their children and grandchildren continue on with their love and values weaved into our every day.

Visitation will be held at Sharon Lutheran Church in Bessemer on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 9:30 to 11 a.m., and her life will be celebrated with a service at 11 a.m. Interment will follow at Hillcrest Cemetery, Bessemer. In lieu of flowers, we request that donations be made in Carol's name to HOPE Animal Shelter, P.O. Box 261, Ironwood, MI 49938.

Lakeside Memorial Chapel Inc., in Wakefield, Mich., is assisting the family.


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