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Doris Irene Cruzen

February 29, 1916 ~ July 21, 2017 (age 101)

The Piano Brothers

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Morris Hill Cemetery
317 N. Latah Street
Boise, ID 83706


Doris Irene Kerlin Cruzen
1916-2017
Mrs. Doris Irene Kerlin Cruzen devoted wife of James B. Cruzen (1915-2005) peacefully passed away at home on July 21, 2017.
“Good Night Irene, Good Night Irene, We’ll see you in Our Dreams”.
Doris Kerlin was born in Rudd, Iowa February 29, 1916 – yes, a Leap Year baby! She celebrated her “25th” birthday last year on February 29, 2016.
In 1932, Doris moved to Boise, Idaho at the age of sixteen years, immediately after graduating from high school in Rudd, Iowa. She was in the first class of students to attend Boise Junior College the year it opened in 1932. Some of the classes she took included Spanish, English, history, social studies and math. She was chastised by her Spanish teacher for starting her 1928 black Ford Roadster called “Sir Hank” that she had parked close to her classroom. When she started “Sir Hank”: it had backfired and disturbed the class. Doris would often be seen around town with her friends crammed into this black noise maker.
Doris was a Kerlin until she met her beloved husband, James B. Curzen at the downtown Boise Branch of Idaho First National Bank where she was working her first job for the bank president, Mr. Baker, who cleverly made sure that Doris and Jim met! Jim and Doris were married on March 16, 1940 in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho and honeymooned in Vancouver, BC.
Jim and Doris had a great life together and were blessed with many friends and family. They were married 65 years, during which time they enjoyed traveling to foreign countries, playing golf and cards, but their real passion was supporting the Boise community. In addition to being lifetime boosters of Boise State University, they also established the Cruzen Family Endowment Scholarship Fund.
For over fifty years, Doris faithfully volunteered hundreds of hours of service to St. Alphonsus Hospital including serving on the Foundation Board of Directors. Not only was she an ardent supporter of Women’s health, she was also actively involved in numerous building fund projects. In 1994 Doris and Jim were jointly honored as St. Alphonsus Distinguished Citizen of the Year for their many years of tireless efforts on behalf of the hospital.
Doris was a member of the Boise Junior League, contributing more of her time ensuring that important community projects in Boise were initiated and completed for the benefit of many. She enjoyed golfing but was also a skilled bridge player, a game she loved so much that in her later years, she played three or four times a week!
Those of us who were lucky enough to know this very special Doris were definitely blessed. She was a genuine humanitarian known for her unwavering kindness and strength of character. Her delightful sense of humor was shared with all, as was the love and respect she unfailingly extended to each and every one.
Doris was that rare person who was uncommonly non-judgmental, and who effortlessly showed genuine interest in the lives of others. She had that special gift of making you feel better about yourself and life because of her wonderfully positive philosophy on life, always living in the present and looking forward to the future.
Jim and Doris had 2 children both of whom survived her: Dr. James Cruzen of Boise and Janice Cruzen Griffith (Wylie Griffith) of Eagle, two grandchildren: Thomas Houston (Maria Houston) of Guadalajara, Mexico and James Houston (Caroline Houston) of Star plus 5 great-grandchildren: Hanna Houston, Bo Houston, David Houston, Mark Houston and Michael Houston.
Additional survivors include numerous nieces, nephew, great and great-great nieces and nephews all of whom adored her!
The family extends its most grateful appreciation to all of Doris’ extraordinary caregivers whose loving support sustained us all: Hal Jeppesen, Debbie Hall, Angie Shea, founder and owner of Bridges Home Care, Melody Helfrich and Jenny Routh. Also, Harrison Hope Hospice, truly a caring and competent group of people. Thank You.
There will be a private family service. Her inurnment will be at the Mausoleum at Morris Hill Cemetery.
Memorial may be made to a favorite charity.
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