Death Notices >
Ann was born to Phil and Colleen Thompson in Spokane, WA in 1958. While many considered her the oldest of six Thompson kids, she remembered and observed herself as a 2nd born of 7, after her parents lost their first daughter as a newborn.
She was a renaissance woman.
She sang in weddings, funerals, restaurants, Mass, talent shows, choirs, and the theater. She preferred folk, parody songs of her authorship, and anything she could play on her guitar.
After St Aloysius Grade School, Ann attended Holy Names Academy, where her mother attended, until Gonzaga Prep, her father’s Alma Mater, went co-ed. She was in the 2nd graduating class of women.
She received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from WSU, and while working in the Sacred Heart pediatrics unit, met a third-year medical student on a pediatric rotation, Mike Gillum, in ‘81; they married a scant year later and had their first of 4 kids another scant year later on the first day of Mike’s residency.
Ann used her creative cooking and baking as a way to show her love for people she cared about and loved tweaking recipes and recreating dishes she ate in her travels and could be relied on to say to the table and waiter “now is there______ in this?” to recreate things she tried at any restaurant. She turned a love of documenting her family into a professional photography practice. She turned an interest in slideshows and commemoration into a commemorative video production career, and she turned cooking classes she taught into an immersive exploration of the featured cuisine after turning her house into a full-scale test kitchen.
When her kids moved away for college and grad school, she began cultivating beautiful orchids, got active with the Spokane Orchid Society, and had at least 30 orchids at the height of her orchid green thumbing.
A lifelong Catholic, she believed passionately in social justice and empathy; she lived out those values through her political engagement, serving as a delegate and Vice Chair of the 6th legislative district of Spokane Democrats and was elected the Democratic Party Precinct Committee Officer for Spokane’s 6205 precincts.
Her dear friends, both lifelong and more recent, provided her great comfort and accompaniment through life’s joys and sorrows; Ann was a devoted, unshakably loyal, and tuned-in friend and family member never forgetting a birthday, anniversary, graduation, wedding, birth, or death. Whether popping into sleepovers with nachos and brownies at 1 am, making allergen-free food for one person at a large event, or painstakingly editing blemishes from every single picture in a middle school and high school graduation slideshow, she managed to delight and delight in nearly everyone she encountered.
She will be welcomed by her family who preceded her in death: her brother, Phil; her sister, baby Colleen; her father, Phil; her mother-in-law, Helen; her father-in-law, Olden Curtis; and beloved aunts, uncles, and cousins. She is survived by her husband, Michael Gillum; her daughters, Katie (Albert) and Megan; her sons, David (Chelsie) and Matt; her grandsons, Wendell Yang-Gillum and Olden Gillum; her mother, Colleen Thompson; her sisters, brothers, great uncle, great aunt, many cousins, her brother- and sister-in-law, and her nieces and nephews.
She is already missed dearly.
The Rosary will be at 10 am, funeral at 11:00 am on Wednesday, November 30, 2022, at St Aloysius Church where she received every sacrament from baptism to her wedding.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in her name to Emily’s List, the Spokane Orchid Society, or the Friends of Manito to support the Manito Holiday Lights.
Please go to www.holycrossofspokane.org for online memorials.