Cecile Ann Tays (Arnold)


May 13, 1935 - February 4, 2021

Cecile Ann Tays (Arnold), 85, of Hot Springs, S.D., passed away February 4, 2021. Cecile was born May 13, 1935, in Pleasanton, Texas, on her parent’s ranch. She had a happy childhood and particularly remembered riding horses with her dad, and time spent in Mexico with her sister and brother-in-law who worked there as a ranger. She was a graduate of Pleasanton High School, and Seton School of Nursing at The University of Texas at Austin. 

She worked as an RN, first in Houston, Texas, then in Tacoma, Wash. She and her husband, Jim, met there and were married 5 quick months later in Gettysburg, S.D., on December 27, 1956. They were married for 64 happy years. She worked as a nurse at the Gettysburg Memorial Hospital, then moved to Hot Springs where she worked at the Sister’s Hospital, Lutheran Memorial Hospital, and the Veterans Administration. She retired in 2004 after a long career of helping others as a wonderful nurse.

Her generosity was one of her greatest qualities. She supported her children and grandchildren’s educations, and gave to many charitable organizations, including the Red Cross, Shriners Hospital, Cancer Society, and St. Jude’s. She enjoyed hunting, and summers spent fishing, and boating at Angostura.

Cecile made beautiful quilts and many of her family members and friends were the beneficiaries of her talent. She was a prolific reader and often had books piled on the floor because there was no more room on her bookshelves. She loved watching sports, especially baseball, and cheered on her favorite teams, the Yankees and the Rockies, through good and bad seasons, being a faithful fan throughout. She was known for her baking, particularly for her pumpkin and pecan pies, and fruit cakes that she made for the holidays. Cecile had an extensive collection of Nutcrackers, including two that she purchased while travelling in Germany. She loved to travel and visited 36 countries on 6 continents.  

She was a caring mother to her three children, Dan, Dave, and DeeDee and loved watching them participate in school activities. She also adored her grandchildren, Jason, Shawn, Ben and Gabi, and her great grandchildren, Hayden and Josh, and frequently plied them with sweets and soda pops.

Cecile was preceded in death by her Father and Mother, Anthony, and Cecilia Arnold; her sisters, Marie and Margaret; her brother, Alfred and her beloved son, David.

Cecile is survived by her husband, James of Hot Springs; daughter, Dee Dee (Nicolas) Johnson of Rapid City; son, Dan Tays of Sheridan, Wyo.; sister, Dorothy Arnold of Fort Collins, Colo., who was also a best friend; 4 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren.

Visitation was held Tuesday, February 9, 2021, at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Hot Springs.

Christian Funeral Vigil was held at 7 p.m., Tuesday, February 9, 2021, at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Hot Springs.   

Christian Funeral Mass was held at 10 a.m., Wednesday, February 10, 2021, at St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church in Hot Springs, with Christian Funeral Committal following at Evergreen Cemetery.  

Christian Funeral Vigil and Christian Funeral Mass will be livestreamed at www.stanthonyhotsprings.org

Memorial gifts can be made to the Knights of Columbus and the Catholic Daughters at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church. 

Fall River County Herald Star

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