Precious memories

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 14, 2007

Laughter and tears.

That's how a large group of family members, neighbors, former teachers and friends remembered the life and the loss of a daughter, a wife and a mother Tuesday evening, June 5, in front of Luverne High School.

A special memorial and time of remembrance was held around a new marker placed next to a young Bradford pear tree that has been planted on the front lawn of LHS in memory of Lynn Patterson Deppen, a 1983 LHS graduate.

Deppen passed away Nov. 27, 2003, at the age of 39. She was living in Illesheim, Germany, at the time of her death.

Rev. William Leverette led the gathering in prayer.

&#8220I look around me, and I see all the friends who had a part in the development of this young lady's life,” Leverette said. &#8220We have come here to rejoice and to reflect.”

Deppen's friend Scott Wallace remembered her as a &#8220beautiful spirit” and a &#8220peacemaker.”

&#8220She'll forever be my friend, and I know I'll see her again one day,” he said.

Martha Dickey, Deppen's former cheerleader sponsor, said that it was very fitting for the tree to be planted in front of the school because &#8220she loved this place so much.”

Coach Glenn Daniel brought a smile to the faces gathered around as he told the story of Deppen and his daughter Debra, who were &#8220constantly together,” and how they got caught one day outside in a thunderstorm.

&#8220They were out in the little house behind our house, and lightening struck,” Daniel said. &#8220It sounded like a shotgunŠ.I ran outside, and they were standing there holding each other, and their hair was literally standing on their heads.”

&#8220She and I were sorority sisters in college,” an emotional Cathy Wilkes said. &#8220We still love her and miss her.”

Deppen was a graduate of Troy University with a B.S. degree in Business/Marketing. She was a member of the Kappa Delta Sorority.

Leverette said that Deppen's life could be compared to the Bradford pear tree that had been planted in her memory.

&#8220It grows, it blossoms, it sheds its leaves,” he said. &#8220There comes a time in life when God says it's enoughŠyet this tree will stand tall and strong, just like Lynn was.”

Deppen's parents are Mrs. Jean Patterson and the late Pat Patterson. Her siblings are Rita Smith of Luverne, Debbie Prescott of Brantley, Rene Price of Birmingham, and Keith Thagard of Dupont, Washington.

She is survived by her husband James Deppen and three children, Patterson, age 11, Rachel, age 9, and Jackson, age 5.