Rae Annice Wallen of Deerfield Beach, FL went to be with the Lord on January 6, 2021 at the age of 80. She was the wife of the late Thomas G. (Jerry) Wallen. Rae was born on November 30, 1940 in West Palm Beach, FL to Raymond Hillegass and Dixie Sellers Hillegass, pioneers of the town of Boca Raton. Rae is survived by her five children—Rodney Wallen and Gail, Cheryl Duncan and Robert, Lori Wallen, Nancy Hardiman, and Erica Tippett, as well as 13 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her parents, grandson Chad Duncan, husband Jerry and brother Phil Hillegass.
A viewing will be held Thursday, January 14th, 2021 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at Glick Family Funeral Home, 3600 North Federal Highway, Boca Raton, FL 33431. Telephone 561-672-1877 or GlickFamilyFuneralHome.com
The funeral services will be Friday January 15th, 2021 at 11:00 a.m. at Glick Family Funeral Home.
Burial will follow at 12:00 p.m. at the Boca Raton Cemetery, 451 SW 4th Avenue, Boca Raton, FL 33432
Please be mindful of COVID 19 during this emotional event. Wear a face mask and maintain proper distance between one another. We want to ensure you each return home safe & well. Thank you.
Memorial contributions may be made to Vitas Hospice, Susan G Komen for the Cure or the American Cancer Society.
Rae was born in 1940, after the Great Depression and only a year before America became involved in World War II. She grew up in the fledgling Town of Boca Raton.
Rae, her younger brother Phil and their friends in the small town were carefree explorers of the undeveloped scrub land and beaches of Boca. It was common for them to spend the daylight hours playing outdoors.
Her father was an outdoorsman as well, hunting and fishing for the plentiful game nearby. He and her mother also grew a large vegetable garden each year and maintained a variety of tropical fruit trees to complement their table.
The home Rae grew up in was built from native old growth southern pine and bald cypress harvested from a parcel outside of town, near the former IBM facility. The timber was cut by her grandfather who was a sawyer for a lumber yard on Hammondville Road in Pompano Beach.
There was no air conditioning. I recall an attic fan in the hallway ceiling. The windows were open, and the doors unlocked. It was a simpler time.
When Rae saw the young man, who would become our father, it was love at first sight. She and Jerry were soon married and starting a family. Dad was a carpenter and followed the seasons – Fall and Winter in Florida, Spring & Summer in Pennsylvania. After the 3rd child they settled in unincorporated Pompano Beach, near Rae’s hometown. Rae remained in this home until her death last week.
Rae loved children and especially babies. As a young wife she taught herself to cook and became quite exceptional at it. She is well known for her cookies, pies and especially her fruitcake. Linda, the wife of her late brother, received the last fruitcake made by Rae for Christmas this year.
She was raised Catholic, but Rae & Jerry were one of the original members of what became Pompano Baptist Temple. They were instrumental in the growth of the church, witnessing, supporting missions and providing expertise on workdays. They later repeated this love of God with the Cornerstone Community and at Fifth Avenue Church of God.
For most of her life Rae enjoyed travelling. She particularly loved the rolling farmlands of Pennsylvania, where she and Jerry visited frequently during mid-life. They were able to build & sell several homes together there, spanning the childhood of the two youngest daughters, Nancy and Erica.
Rae was also a history buff, for both her native Boca Raton and of the Gettysburg Civil War Battlefield. She could recount many stories of early Boca and its people. And she spent many days touring the battlefield.
She & Jerry loved their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren very much and their extended family. They took many trips to visit family and instill in us love and family values.
Rae’s love touched the lives of all her family, friends and even some strangers. We love you Mom and will each miss you deeply.
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