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Born at Cottonwood Maternity Hospital in Murray, Utah at 1:20 a.m. on June 13th, 1948, Annie was the first child of Ruthford John and Ruth Bills Mathews. She passed away suddenly on December 4th, 2018 at American Fork Hospital. She had recovered from 7 major surgeries and multiple hospitalizations in the last 2 years, and was just starting to get her strength back.
Annette was briefly an only child until her baby brother, Robert John, was born a year and half later. Being the only two children, she often talked about how he was her best friend growing up.
Her family lived in Riverton, Utah, where she loved to “work” at her Grandpa Bill’s General Store and spending time with her family. Annette said later in life that she always felt like “Scout” in ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’, living just down the street from the store. At 8 years of age her family moved to Roosevelt, Utah, where they worked hard together to take over her grandpa Mathews’ farm. They grew alfalfa and raised cattle. She loved all the animals, and often lamented that at her house it was never “what are we having for dinner?”, but “who are we having for dinner?” Later in life Annie indicated that she would have loved to live out her life on that farm; it really meant the world to her and she loved the memories she made there. She was baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints while living in the Roosevelt Ward.
As a youth, she learned the value of hard work and living with integrity. Annette spoke of how she loved being outdoors and would much rather be out with her Daddy, than in the house. She was very proud of her heritage. Growing up they did not have much, but Annie always spoke about how her Daddy and Mom made very little be enough. One of her favorite memories centered on times that her Dad would make her gifts. They became some of her most valued treasures.
Annette graduated from Union High School in Roosevelt, Utah, where she was on the track team. She had learned to play the accordion, and loved to show it to her family later in life. After graduation, Annie took a job at Mountain Bell in the Uintah Basin. She loved working on the switch board. She moved to Riverton, Utah while working for Mountain Bell, but then took a job at First Security Bank working in their 2nd South office in Salt Lake. She really loved being a banker. While living in the Salt Lake Valley, she lived with her Grandma Cecilia Bills. Here, these kindred spirits made a lasting bond that often was a treasured memory shared. She loved her Grandma a lot and always tried to emulate the attributes of loving others that she learned at her feet.
In 1969 Annette’s family was sealed in the Salt Lake Temple.
In May 1971, she and a girlfriend took a trip to the Hawaiian Islands, where she met a Naval Submarine Sonar Tech, Keith Brent Stoddard. They both knew that they “knew each other before” and she spoke of how “within a few days” realized she was supposed to marry him. At the end of the week, before he went to sea, they were engaged to be married. She flew home to plan a wedding. They communicated over the phone, but did not see each other again until just before she was Endowed June 25, 1971 in the Logan Temple. Annette and Keith were sealed in the Salt Lake Temple by Elder Marion D. Hanks (who had served as Keith’s mission president) on June 28, 1971. (Yes, if you did the math, they were married 6 weeks after meeting, with only a handful of days in each other’s presence!)
The newlyweds settled down in Hawaii, where Annette spent time adjusting to being a military wife. She spent time getting to know Clayton and Marcia Conn, who were raising their family while serving in the Navy on the island as well. They “adopted” her & Keith as their own, and they became a second family to Keith and Annette’s family. While expecting their first child Keith was transferred to San Diego. While visiting her family in Roosevelt, their first son, Brent Mathews (“Brentso”), was born. Annette and Keith stayed in California where they were blessed with two more children Sean David (“Diddle”) just before Christmas in 1973, and Heather Leilani (“Heddy”) as a preemie, almost 2 months early, in April 1976. Annette loved living on Coronado Island and it was always important to the family to drive over the bridge and play on the beach there whenever we went there for a vacation.
The family moved to Provo, Utah after Keith left the Navy, so he could study at BYU. After one semester, he was offered a job with a company in the Eastern United States, so the family moved to Fredrick, Maryland. They would spend a year and half there before moving back to Orem, Utah for Keith to finish his schooling at BYU. Annette reacquainted herself with First Security Bank, where she first worked as a teller and then as a Teller Supervisor.
In June of 1980, Annette and Keith welcomed their fourth child, their baby girl Jennifer Tianna (“Smoo”). She worked hard to balance the life of working full-time and being a mom. She served in many church callings while a member of the Church, but her most favorite was serving as Young Women’s Camp Director of the Cherry Hill 6th Ward. She loved creating memories for those girls, camping, and making each girl feel like they were her favorite.
In 1994, the family bought a home and moved to Pleasant Grove, Utah. Annette left First Security Bank in 1996 when Wells Fargo took over, and took a job at DHI as a banking computing specialist. This job afforded her the opportunity to travel to visit banks across the mid-west and she loved to explore while she was there. A few times she took Keith with her. She loved working in the banking industry and was really good at her job.
She loved to travel and she and Keith often “went on adventures”. Her most favorite places to explore were along the Pacific Northwest coast, especially when she got to see her kids and grandkids. She was the kind of mother and grandmother that made you feel like you were the most important person to her. Every grandchild will tell you that they were her favorite.
She had a way of really seeing people, recognizing their needs, and doing her best to love and comfort them with words of love and encouragement. She loved to crochet, garden, working with wood and was an amazing artist. Her loved ones often were the recipients of special “projects” that she had created for them. She loved genealogy and learning about her ancestors. She often felt their presence and loved sharing their stories. Even though she had anxieties about being around large groups of people, Annette loved to serve others individually, though later in life it became more difficult with all of her medical concerns.
Annette celebrated her 70th birthday this past summer. She will be waiting on the other side of the veil for: her husband, Keith Stoddard, of Pleasant Grove, UT, as well as her children: Brent (Nicole) Stoddard of Puyallup, WA, Sean (Katina) Stoddard of Orem, UT, Heather (Jestin) Dorius of Spanish Fork, UT, and Jenny (Clint) Campbell of American Fork, UT, and 18 grandchildren: Morgan, Britt (Ian) , Jesselynn, and Kate Jo Stoddard, Tony, Billy (Becca), Joey, AJ, Bob, Bethani Stoddard, Cole & Trinity Watson, Emmalee (Colton) Smith, Cody, Cameron, and Caleb Dorius. She leaves behind her beloved cat Butters. She also leaves behind her brother, Robert (Christine) Mathews of Roosevelt, UT, her father-in-law Archie (Margean) Stoddard & her sister-in-law Becky (Kevin) McOmber of Pocatello, ID and dearest “adopted” parents Clayton and Marcia Conn of Springville, UT. She also has nieces, nephews, cousins, and many other family and friends who will deeply miss her. She was preceded in death by her grandparents, parents, mother-in-law (Beverly Stoddard), and a newborn nephew.
The family would like to thank all those who have shared their sorrow. Your love and kindness have been deeply appreciated. Our Sincerest Gratitude to Pleasant Grove City’s Emergency Personnel, American Fork Hospital Emergency Room Doctors & Staff, Battle Creek 7th Ward Relief Society & Ward Family & Olpin Family Mortuary, Pleasant Grove, Utah.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, December 8, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. in the Battlecreek Seventh Ward Chapel, 1106 East 200 South, Pleasant Grove. Family and friends may attend a viewing from 9:00 - 10:45 a.m. prior to the services. Interment will be in the Pleasant Grove City Cemetery. Condolences may be sent to the family at www.olpinmortuary.com.
In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations in her name be sent to “Quarters for Christmas” to provide winter clothing for children in poverty.