Laura passed away at home, surrounded by love with her three children and her husband Ray, after fighting stomach cancer for 1.5 years. She had been eager for a big 80th birthday celebration in April, but COVID-19 forced a more intimate gathering. Laura was born in Benson, UT to Earnest and Sarah Merrill Hobbs. Her siblings, LaGrande, Cleo and Robert preceded her in death. Laura easily made friends wherever she lived and was well-known for her loving and charitable nature. She provided a lifetime of service within the LDS Church, in each auxiliary; compassionate service efforts fit her best. She graduated from BYU, majoring in Clothing and Textiles. At BYU, she met and married Leo Linning, moved to Idaho Falls, ID and together they established Pfaff Sewing Center, selling machines, fabrics, and teaching sewing classes. They had 3 children together. After leaving Idaho, Laura continued her sewing and teaching passion for 20 years in Salt Lake City, UT. She married Jim Dickinson in 1975 and enjoyed 32 years of large family activities and travel with Laura’s 3 children and Jim’s 6 children and grandchildren. Their home was open to many, including grandson Michael, and became Grandma Daycare for her sweet grandbabies when Laura retired. Laura and Jim had a passion for ballroom dance, even winning several trophies in competitions. After Jim passed, Laura married her long-time friend and Shingleton’s Pfaff co-worker Raymond Witzel, who also lost his spouse. Laura and Ray were sealed in the Salt Lake LDS temple in February 2009. They enjoyed family activities, many trips nationally and abroad and served an LDS service mission in the Family Search Mission. Laura maintained very close friendships from high school, college, the Avenues years, and recent Centerville neighbors. She also stayed close to most of her “ex-relatives” and was like a second mother/grandmother to the second family of children and grandchildren of Leo Sr. (with Larraine). It was common to see Laura or Larraine at a sealing, baptism or other event for each other’s children and grandchildren. They even took a vacation together with all nine children (sans Leo, of course!) Laura is survived by her husband Ray; her children Lisa, Leo Jr (Rhonda), Laura and grandchildren, Leo III, Robin, Elisabeth, Anthony; Jim’s children Coke (Debbie), Anna, Elizabeth, Alayne (Alan), Steven, Thomas (Sang), and grandchildren; Ray’s children Rebecca (Bruce), Julie (Dell), Ronald (Ursula), Merrill (Melissa), Claudia (Brian), Gary, Bryan (Angie), Alan (Marlene), grandchildren and great grandchildren.
Out of an abundance of COVID-19 caution, no funeral or viewing services will be held. Laura will be laid to rest in the Salt Lake City Cemetery with a small family graveside service on Thursday, June 25. Online guestbook and memories can be shared at www.russonmortuary.com.
Directions in the Salt Lake Cemetery: Enter the cemetery from the southwest corner on 400 "N" Street. Continue on Main to Grand, turn East to Center, then South. Look for the blue canopy with "Russon" written on the side.
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