Obituary for Norma Lee Mueller, 87
–Norma Lee Mueller, 87, of Paso Robles, CA, died Thursday, April 9, 2020 at Creston Village, Paso Robles, CA. She had been in failing health this past year especially after a second broken hip and end-stage heart disease.
Norma was born in Golden, Illinois on May 15, 1932, the daughter of Jacob Hinrich and Helen F. Wienke Totsch. Norma was an only child. She was baptized on May 22, 1932 and confirmed on April 14, 1946, both at Immanuel Lutheran Church, in Golden, IL. Norma graduated from Golden High School, Golden, IL in 1950. Norma was married to Russell Wayne Mueller on June 17, 1951. She graduated from San Diego State University, San Diego, CA with BA in Social Work in 1980. During her internship, she developed a program for refugee women with small children to learn English with their mothers.
She served as Center Coordinator of San Diego YWCA (1981-1984), as director of Sponsorship/Resettlement for the Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service in San Diego (1984-1985), and as Executive Director of Travelers Aid Society in Long Beach and Orange County, CA (1985-1994) working with the homeless of the communities. She retired as a social worker in 1994.
Norma served on many different boards throughout her career and retirement: Planned Parenthood Teenage Advisory Board of San Diego, Lutheran Social Services of Southern California, Home of Guiding Hands (developmentally disabled) in Santee, CA, and ECHO (Homeless Organization) in Atascadero, CA and many other organizations and networks.
Norma was active in the church as leader for adult and youth groups, retreat planner, and choir member. She was a member of Hope Lutheran Church in Atascadero, CA.
She was a licensed instructor for Parent Effectiveness Training and Teacher Effectiveness Training along with her husband and assisted many parents in developing more effective parenting skills.
Norma and her husband were actively involved with refugee resettlement after the fall of Vietnam through 1990s. They personally sponsored numerous Southeast Asian refugee families and foster children in their home, along with encouraging their various churches to sponsors individuals and families through Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service. Norma and Russ each presented awards by the Wartburg College Alumni Association, Waverly, IA for their involvement in community activities and refugee work in 1984.
Surviving is five children, David and his wife, Judith Kulla of Hastings, MN; Mike of Castro Valley, CA; Kelly Greenne (former daughter-in-law) of Hayward, CA; Matthew of Paso Robles, CA; Brian and his wife Michelle of Castro Valley, CA; Sylvia of Turlock, CA; three Vietnamese foster sons: Khoa Van Do, Thanh Van Do, and Thien Pham and three grandsons: Steven Waybright, Micah Mueller, Christian Mueller and one granddaughter, Sierra Greenne; numerous great-grandchildren and several cousins. She was preceded in death by one Vietnamese foster son, Hung Tran and her husband, Russ.
A Memorial service will take place at later date at Hope Lutheran Church, Atascadero, CA. The Committal will take place at Golden Community Cemetery, Golden, IL at a later date.
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