ForeverMissed
This memorial website was created in memory of Cheryl Ann Nordin Ower, 66 years old, born on May 10, 1954, and passed away on February 22, 2021. 

My mom has touched many lives over the years, and I would love for us all to be able to share those memories with each other.  I would love to read Grandma Cheryl's stories to my daughter and have written records of her impact in the world for all her loved ones to be comforted by.

Please select the "STORIES" tab above and share your memories of Cheryl.  You can add a photo to the story as well, if you want.  If you have more photos to share, please select the "GALLERY" tab to add more photos.
Posted by Jadene Payton on March 24, 2021
We wish we could have met Cheryl sooner in life & gotten to know her better. The first time we met was at her father's & my mother's wedding rehearsal in 1995. (They enjoyed 24 1/2 years of marriage after both had been widowed). But I had talked to Cheryl earlier on the phone & introduced myself & we 4 adult kids made plans to go in together to buy the folks a night at a special resort at Lake Arrowhead as our wedding gift. My mother was very nervous about me getting Cheryl's phone number as she thought we were "plotting" something. (Well, that's another story!)
After Cheryl & Artie moved to Hanford, we saw them occasionally when we visited from San Luis Obispo. After we moved back to Visalia in 2004 we saw a little more of the family, having dinners together, usually for a special occasion.
The last visit was when they came from Hawaii for my mother's memorial service in 2019 so they could support Cheryl's dad, James Nordin. Her health was failing her again as it had over the years. We are sad that she had to endure so many health challenges, but she did it with a gracious spirit & always told us we could ask her for advice when we had issues of our own. She liked helping others which made her a perfect nurse.
Your Grandpa Jim (Nordin) was so concerned about Cheryl's health & was fearful about losing her, since he had already lost his son a few years earlier. His passing was only 8 months before hers. I wonder if he was surprised to see her in heaven so soon.
To all of you in the immediate family, you have been in our hearts & prayers. I am so thankful that we are all believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, & I am confident that there is a BIG table being set for us all when we get to the Big House. Sending our love. Jadene & John Payton
Posted by Debbie Dwyer on March 8, 2021
I first got to know Cheryl during our college/career days at Bethany Church in Alhambra, CA. We enjoyed going on choir tours together, singing in the Singing Christmas Tree, being a part of the college/career class upstairs in the old Landrus building. Then soon after those years we all began getting married one after another. Later we all began to move to other parts of the country, hearing updates by word of mouth or through the internet how others were doing.  We are so happy to have known Cheryl and are even happier that we will see one another again throughout all Eternity with our Lord and Savior!
Posted by Kady Gaines on March 8, 2021
I met Cheryl when we moved next door in 2011. We shared a wobbly fence between our two properties. One morning I was at a swim meet in Fresno when I got a call from Cheryl. She wanted to know if it was ok to feed my dogs Bacon. Well yes of course, but why?  Not only did the dogs escape my house, but had decided to enter hers. If that wasn’t enough they decided it was time to hop in bed with Artie and Cheryl! Since everyone was now awake breakfast was in the mix. Eventually we did replace the fence and no further early morning wake ups occurred. Cheryl was a beautiful woman with a beautiful hear and will be very missed. ❤️
Posted by darlene parr on March 4, 2021
I probably have some of the earliest memories of Cheryl. For my parents Cheryl was the first grandchild in our family, she was born to my big sister Carol and her husband Jim when Carol was barely 20 and I was all of 15. Cheryl was cute and sweet, and remained that way throughout her life. When she was in grammar school, she befriended a little classmate with Downs Syndrome. Cheryl became her best friend. I remember how thankful the little classmate’s mother was that her daughter had found someone so kind and true. That was the tone throughout Cheryl’s life, filling the need wherever she went. That led her to choose nursing as her profession. Her teacher in high school said she should pursue being a doctor her mind was that sharp. But Cheryl settled on Pediatric Nurse. She got her nursing degree from the Nursing School connected to Los Angeles General Hospital. It was a very challenging program, but Cheryl did very well. 
I was in Hong Kong when Cheryl met Artie at the church she was attending while in Nursing School. She admired his faithfulness in driving the church bus. I got a call in Hong Kong from my Mom and she said “Cheryl is engaged.” I said I didn’t even know she was going with anyone. My mother said “Well you could just see it coming.” I had to remind my Mom I was too far away to see anything coming. Cheryl and Artie got married that year and the rest is history.

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Recent Tributes
Posted by Jadene Payton on March 24, 2021
We wish we could have met Cheryl sooner in life & gotten to know her better. The first time we met was at her father's & my mother's wedding rehearsal in 1995. (They enjoyed 24 1/2 years of marriage after both had been widowed). But I had talked to Cheryl earlier on the phone & introduced myself & we 4 adult kids made plans to go in together to buy the folks a night at a special resort at Lake Arrowhead as our wedding gift. My mother was very nervous about me getting Cheryl's phone number as she thought we were "plotting" something. (Well, that's another story!)
After Cheryl & Artie moved to Hanford, we saw them occasionally when we visited from San Luis Obispo. After we moved back to Visalia in 2004 we saw a little more of the family, having dinners together, usually for a special occasion.
The last visit was when they came from Hawaii for my mother's memorial service in 2019 so they could support Cheryl's dad, James Nordin. Her health was failing her again as it had over the years. We are sad that she had to endure so many health challenges, but she did it with a gracious spirit & always told us we could ask her for advice when we had issues of our own. She liked helping others which made her a perfect nurse.
Your Grandpa Jim (Nordin) was so concerned about Cheryl's health & was fearful about losing her, since he had already lost his son a few years earlier. His passing was only 8 months before hers. I wonder if he was surprised to see her in heaven so soon.
To all of you in the immediate family, you have been in our hearts & prayers. I am so thankful that we are all believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, & I am confident that there is a BIG table being set for us all when we get to the Big House. Sending our love. Jadene & John Payton
Posted by Debbie Dwyer on March 8, 2021
I first got to know Cheryl during our college/career days at Bethany Church in Alhambra, CA. We enjoyed going on choir tours together, singing in the Singing Christmas Tree, being a part of the college/career class upstairs in the old Landrus building. Then soon after those years we all began getting married one after another. Later we all began to move to other parts of the country, hearing updates by word of mouth or through the internet how others were doing.  We are so happy to have known Cheryl and are even happier that we will see one another again throughout all Eternity with our Lord and Savior!
Posted by Kady Gaines on March 8, 2021
I met Cheryl when we moved next door in 2011. We shared a wobbly fence between our two properties. One morning I was at a swim meet in Fresno when I got a call from Cheryl. She wanted to know if it was ok to feed my dogs Bacon. Well yes of course, but why?  Not only did the dogs escape my house, but had decided to enter hers. If that wasn’t enough they decided it was time to hop in bed with Artie and Cheryl! Since everyone was now awake breakfast was in the mix. Eventually we did replace the fence and no further early morning wake ups occurred. Cheryl was a beautiful woman with a beautiful hear and will be very missed. ❤️
her Life

Childhood

Cheryl grew up moving frequently because her dad, James Harold Nordin "Jim", was a radar technician.  He worked on radar installations at airports, all around the United States.  Jim grew up in Arkansas.  Her mother, Carole Frances Van de Velde Nordin, grew up in California.  Cheryl was born when Carole was 20 and James was 23.  Her brother, James Arthur Nordin "Jimmy", was born 5 years later.  Cheryl was cute and sweet, and remained that way throughout her life. She was the first grandchild to Carole's parents, Elvira Van de Velde "Vi" and Arthur Van de Velde "Pop Pop."  Jim's parents were Thelma Nordin Israel and James Israel "Poppa Jim."

Within a year of her parent's marriage, Cheryl was born in Fullerton, California, where Jim was going to college.  Jim took a lot of classes, but didn't finish his degree.  After college, Jim had the choice between moving to Miami or Little Rock, and since Jim had roots in Arkansas, that's where they chose.  Carole and Jim found the Lord during their time in Little Rock.  They later moved to Michigan where Jim worked in electronics as a technical writer.  Jimmy was born in Mount Clemens, Michigan.  They moved back to California for Jim's work when Cheryl and Jimmy were young.

When Cheryl was in grammar school, she befriended a little classmate with Downs syndrome. Cheryl became her best friend. The little classmate’s mother was so thankful that her daughter had found someone so kind and true. That was the tone throughout Cheryl’s life, filling the need wherever she went. That led her to choose nursing as her profession. Her teacher in high school said she should pursue being a doctor, because her mind was that sharp. But Cheryl settled on pediatric nurse. 

Cheryl had fond memories of summers spent staying with her grandparents in Orange County, CA.  Grandma Vi and Pop Pop had a house in Costa Mesa and a cabin by the beach in the Bayshore Trailer Park in Newport Beach.  She had a really special relationship with her grandparents.

For a time, Jim and Carole lived in Ventura, CA.  Cheryl loved her little short haired black and white dog, Pepper, possibly a terrier.  She always remembered how her dog got out the back gate and got hit by a car.  She loved Pepper fiercely.  Cheryl started high school while they lived in Ventura.

Jim and Carole bought a house in Carpenteria, CA, where Cheryl graduated high school.

Cheryl would tells stories about the days when she wasn't allowed to wear pants to school.  All the girls had to wear dresses.  She wasn't allowed to watch The Monkees TV show because the actors had long hair, which was thought to be against God at the time.

Young Adult Life

After high school, Cheryl went to a 3 year nursing school program at USC School of Nursing in Los Angeles.  She would tell stories about how she and her friends would drive around the city and purposefully get themselves lost, to have a fun challenge finding their way home.

Cheryl met Arthur Daniel Ower "Artie" when she visited Bethany Church of Alhambra a few times while she was in nursing school.  It was at a college snow retreat with the church where they hit it off.  Some weekends she would drive to visit her parents in Santa Barbara and go to church there.  Cheryl admired Artie's faithfulness in driving the church bus.  One Sunday night, a group of 10-15 went out to coffee and dinner after evening service.  Artie had his pick up truck with just one bench seat, but 3 of them were going to fit into the truck.  Cheryl scooted over to make room, but the third person never came.  Cheryl didn't scoot back over and stayed in the middle.  They began dating shortly after and they dated about a year and a half to two years.  One thing Cheryl always remembered was how she liked when Artie would go play with his nieces and nephews when they were at family gatherings during the early years.

Cheryl completed her nursing program in 1975 and worked in pediatrics for her entire nursing career, working in several hospitals and doctor's offices.

Artie and Cheryl were married April 9, 1976 at Bethany Church of Alhambra.  Cheryl was 21 and Artie was 23.  They really enjoyed this season of life.  They had lots of close relationships with friends from church and nursing school.

Adult Life & Parenthood

Artie and Cheryl had two children, Rebecca Ann "Becky" 1979 and David Daniel 1983, both born at Garfield Hospital, and both on August 25th.  Rebecca was born while they lived in a rental house in Monrovia.  When Rebecca was a year old, Artie's work moved them to Santa Rosa in Northern California.  Cheryl worked in a pediatrician's office there.  They lived in Santa Barbara for a few months before moving back to the Los Angeles area, again for Artie's work.  David was born while they lived in a rental house in Glendora.

Artie and Cheryl bought a 3 bedroom mobile home, in a community called Peachwood, in Pomona, CA, where they lived for 10 years.  While there, Cheryl worked part time as a nurse and spent the rest of her time raising her kids, doing crafts, and spending time with friends.  She and Artie were very active at Covina Assembly of God during these years.  Artie was a sound and light technician for the church and Cheryl was a part of women's ministries and craft groups.  Cheryl loved to go out to eat at Sizzler almost every Sunday after church.  She loved to order the hibachi chicken and salad bar.

Camping at Campland in San Diego was a favorite summer getaway.  Artie and Cheryl would often borrow Grandpa Jim's motorhome and meet up with their good friends and family at Campland for two weeks at a time.  Alan and Janie Ower and their three kids would always go and different people from church would come over the years.  They spent a lot of time in the Campland pool playing with all the kids.  One year, Tim Ower brought two catamarans and everyone had fun boating.  From the boat you could see penguins from SeaWorld, which was a thrill for everyone.

After the birth of David, Cheryl began to have significant problems with her blood sugar levels being too low and interfering with the quality of her life.  Around 1993, Cheryl's mother passed away.  Around the same time, Cheryl's liver began to have problems.

Feeling a calling from God, and to be closer to Cheryl's father and only aunt, Artie and Cheryl moved to Hanford in Central CA.  They moved in with her aunt and uncle, Darlene "Dar" and Darrell Parr.  For the first year, Artie stayed in Los Angeles to try to sell their Peachwood home and he would come to Hanford on the weekends.  Cheryl first worked as a pediatric surgery recovery nurse for oral surgeries to be able to work, but not be exposed to germs, to protect her weakened immune system.  Artie and Cheryl were active at Koinonia Church in Hanford.  Rebecca finished her junior and senior year of high school in Hanford and then went to Vanguard University of Southern CA.  David started 7th grade in Hanford.  After high school, David joined the navy for four years.  At that time, Cheryl worked at the Fresno Children's Hospital with children who were sedated for brain scans, typically autistic children.  Some of her co-workers became very good friends.

Artie and Cheryl lived in an apartment in Edgewater, in Handford, after moving out of Aunt Dar and Uncle Darrell's house.

In 2000, Cheryl Ower had a liver transplant in San Francisco.  Artie stayed through the surgery and the first few days, but had to return to work.  Rebecca stayed with her for the first week, Aunt Dar stayed the next week, and Wendy Michaels stayed the final week and brought her home.  The transplant went well and gave her many more years of life.

Cheryl recovered well from the liver transplant and found that her blood sugar problems had improved as well.  She found it ironic that suddenly she could eat all the treats she wanted without consequence, while Artie had recently been diagnosed with diabetes and could not. She began working again.
Recent stories

The Eye of the Dog

Shared by Kara Swink on March 27, 2021
In loving memory of Cheryl, I share with your our shared connection over our best, furry friends. 

Before I met Cheryl, I met a short, stout gal named Daisy. I’m certain I was acquainted with Miss Daisy first, as the clat-clat-clat of that dog’s stubby little paws often went a’trotting before Cheryl’s every move. When Cheryl saw me with Daisy, her eyes would light up as she would dote on the four-legged friend who was more like a cherished confidante for Cheryl. 

Likewise, upon Cheryl meeting me, she met a feisty gal named Yodi. Yodi likely bounded before me to pounce upon Cheryl before I could embarrassingly reign the little fireball in. Despite the punch of Yodi’s terrier gusto, I saw Cheryl there, happily smiling and speaking the dog whisperer language. I felt at ease knowing I met another one of my own blood... yep, dog people. 

Every time I saw Cheryl, I would look for Daisy and welcome her big, dramatic, attention-seeking eyes, only encouraging her to be more of a lush. If Yodi was with me, Cheryl would whip up a gourmet meal for both pups to enjoy (served on a ceramic dish, no less). 

Cheryl had a crafting table that was adorned with scrapbooking paper, stickers and embellishments. She created a card for me when I lost Yodi, and out of everything in the day I lost my best friend, it was Cheryl’s card that comforted me. I’m sure Daisy was at her feet the entire time she created that card. Cheryl understood the special connection that I had with my dog, because it was similar to hers and Daisy’s bond. Cheryl made the time to show love in her own way by creating, and that is something I will always remember. 

Cheryl and I connected over the eye of the dog. The gaze of man’s best friend that grounds you back into the carefree afternoons of childhood, and at the same time, inspires you to move forward into the mornings that lay beyond. “Dogs ‘get’ you, it’s so funny to me that they don’t even have to say words and they can just know what you’re feeling, they’re just there for you always...it’s in their eyes”, Cheryl told me on more than one occasion. With a happy, resounding yes, I always agreed.  

What a woman who, even amidst much, still held a happy, childlike love for a dog. Here’s to Cheryl and her bright heart that always shined next to Daisy.

“A dog will make eye contact. A cat will, too, but a cat’s eyes don’t even look entirely warm-blooded to me, whereas a dog’s eyes look human except less guarded. A dog will look at you as if to say, ‘What do you want me to do for you? I’ll do anything for you.’ Whether a dog can in fact, do anything for you if you don’t have sheep [I never have] is another matter. The dog is willing.” – Roy Blount Jr.






Shared by Fern Stark on March 9, 2021
Coffee with Cheryl was a treat, we enjoyed being out together, how I wish I could take her again. I enjoyed hearing about coloring with her grand daughter, walking her elderly doggie, how the house plans were coming along, etc.  I still have bubble bath y lotion she brought me from her last mainland trip.
Thank you Father for allowing Amanda y me one last visit with her before she left us.
It was so fun to see her in her own little home, thoroughly enjoying the things that were packed away so long. It is a sweet, happy memory of a friend who was so kind. 
I look forward to seeing her again 
Shared by Elizabeth Spencer on March 8, 2021
Cheryl and I became friends at church Koinonia Christian Fellowship back in the early 90's. When we moved to North Carolina, and your family moved to the islands she and I became FB friends and stayed in touch sharing how life had changed for us. She was such an inspiration for me during some health challenges I had. Always telling me something good to focus on and look forward to. Her humor was contagious! She will be sorely missed by me. However, with the HOPE we shared in Christ Jesus, we will meet again.