Alice Lucille (Sutherland) Ward was born January 12, 1933. After a battle with cancer, she was peacefully called home by our Heavenly Father on January 2, 2023 just 10 days shy of her 90th birthday. Alice or ‘A,’ as she was known by everyone who loved her, was a beautiful and loving wife, a caring, understanding and patient mom to her eight children and a devout Catholic. Everything Alice did as a mother, wife and homemaker flowed from her deep and abiding faith to our Lord and Blessed Mother. Her motherly and tender compassion went way beyond family and extended to anyone who needed a mother’s loving touch.
She was born in Tucson, Arizona to Neil and Blanche Sutherland where she attended Tucson High School.
‘A’ met her ‘sailor man,’ Ben Ward, in 1950 and they were married just a few months later. Although mom enjoyed bowling, golf and tennis, competitiveness was not her nature. She loved quiet (since she had little of it) reading, listening and forming deep relationships is what would best describe her. She loved card games and, if she was playing poker, expect her to win. Her bridge group lasted over 60 years and was filled with laughter, bonding and a true sisterhood that she treasured.
Mom was a remarkable and amazing homemaker. She loved being a mom and always said that all she ever wanted was to have a bunch of children. Her strength was tireless and her attention and care for her family was never ending.
Our house was always full. Whoever wandered into our house, friends, relatives, and sometimes strangers, mom made them feel welcome. Everyone got fed and given a meal or two or three. There was even the time when she had us kids take food and blankets to a homeless man who was living in the alley behind our house. Mom’s rule was that if anyone did not have a place to go for Thanksgiving, they were invited here for what was always a wonderful and delicious feast. Growing up, there was always milk in the fridge, cookies in the cookie jar and, as we got older, limoncello in the freezer.
Mom and dad shared an amazing love and bond that lasted 65 earthly years. On their first date, dad took her flying in his plane which she hated and was scared to death. Overtime she faced this fear, studied for months, took lessons in private and, made a solo airplane flight, just to surprise dad. It was this type of boundless courage and indomitable inner strength combined with her quiet wisdom and intuitiveness that made her so incredible.
Her spirit is now flying in heaven but her example, wit and wisdom are here and remain in our hearts. Her influence on her children, grandchildren and great grandchildren is incalculable. Her love and devotion touched and changed all of our lives. We love you mom you are forever in our hearts.
A is survived by her eight children: Benjamin Donlon Ward, Jr, Mary Ellen Zeman (David), Michael Stephen Ward (Cecilia), James Patrick Ward (Mary), John Daniel Ward (Margalit), Catherine Camille Nolan (Paul), Thomas Joseph Ward (Andrea), Lauri Anne Cooney (Rhett), brother Neil Sutherland (Janis). Mom leaves behind a loving legacy of 22 grandchildren and 24 great grandchildren.
A Visitation will be held from 4:00 to 7:00pm with a Rosary at 6:00pm on Thursday, January 12, 2023 at Whitney & Murphy Funeral Home at 4800 E Indian School, Phoenix. The funeral Mass will be held on Friday, January 13th at 10:30am at Blessed Sacrament Parish, 11300 N. 64th Street, Scottsdale 85254.
In lieu of flowers donations are kindly being accepted to Smile Train (smiletrain.org)
or Sunrise for Rural Dwellers (helping to build the Uvuru Hospital in rural Africa) www.sunriseRD.com/319.779.3898
Condolences may be expressed at www.whitneymurphyfuneralhome.com.
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