Obituary of Althea Haberman
Althea K Haberman
Althea K (Wirth) Haberman of Boise, Idaho, passed away in the early hours of Friday, November 17th, 2023 at the age of 78, after an extended struggle with cancer. She was surrounded by her loving family in her home, just a week short of her 79th birthday.
Althea Wirth was born November 23rd, 1944 in Portland, Oregon to parents Lewis and Georgia, joining her older brother Terry. The family moved to Homedale, Idaho after WWII. Althea grew up along the banks of the Snake River, making many lifelong friends and earning money by working dozens of jobs, including babysitting, cleaning, and waitressing to hoeing sugar beets and onions in the fields. She had an extraordinarily strong work ethic that would last her whole life. In 1963 she was voted valedictorian of her graduating class at Homedale High School.
Althea decided to start working in Boise right out of high school. Later, she would confess that not attending college was one of the great regrets of her life. While working for Boise Cascade, she attended a group date with some friends and a few Airmen on leave from Mountain Home Air Force Base. She would meet a young man from Barney, North Dakota named Ronald Haberman. Like they say, the rest was history. Married in 1966, they spent some time in Inglewood, California before returning to Boise for good.
After starting a family, Althea spent 25 years working from home for B&B, a small manufacturing business. Starting as a seamstress she eventually became the bookkeeper making sure everything ran smoothly.
In addition to being a loving mother, Althea had a deep passion for life's simple pleasures. She found solace and joy in tending to her yard and garden, where vibrant blooms and lush greens flourished under her care. Her culinary skills were unmatched; her tiny kitchen was a place where magic happened. Althea made sure dinner hit the table every day at 6 pm sharp. Her kids never once had to ask, “When’s dinner?” She could whip up the most delectable baked goods, always having treats for her children and grandchildren who were fortunate to visit. Even as her body was failing, she continued to bake extra special treats for her husband’s Meals on Wheels deliveries. Her artistic talents knew no bounds, as she meticulously pursued counted cross stitch and needlepoint projects, receiving several blue ribbons at the Western Idaho Fair. Her legacy lives on in the beauty she cultivated and the love she poured into every dish and stitch.
She taught her children perseverance, kindness, resilience, work ethic, manners, and how important it is to “show up” for others. She always showed up. She was helping with funeral lunches at church while in excruciating pain from her cancer. None of her kids ever had an event she wasn’t fully present at, and honestly, she was there for everything she could be for her grandkids. She believed strongly in thank you notes. She made sure that a greeting card landed in your mailbox every birthday and anniversary without fail. Her love language was gifts and no one could come up with more thoughtful gifts than she did. Every one of her children-in-law, Chris, Jessica, and Adrian, have been astounded at her generosity.
Althea was preceded in death by her father Lewis, mother Georgia, her sister-in-law Peggy Wirth, and her parents-in-law Lawrence and Regina Haberman. She is survived by her husband of 57 years Ronald, and her children Kimberley Erwin, Jason Haberman, and Kristen Mouw. Her grandchildren Zac and Marcus Erwin, Alexandra and Meredith Haberman, and Olivia and Noah Mouw.
Services will be held at Sacred Heart Catholic Church (811 S. Latah) on Thursday, November 30th at 11 am. Rosary will be said at 10:30 am. All are welcome. Instead of flowers, the family has requested that a donation be made in her name to either the Idaho Foodbank or Metro Meals on Wheels Boise.
When asked, “What makes you happy?” this is how she responded:
“Growing old with the one I love, hearing from or seeing my offspring and knowing all is well with you, a good day’s work well done, a good book to read, beautiful music to listen to, a clean, tidy house, a good meal with people I care about, good memories, something to look forward to and hugs from my grandkids”