Deborah Ellis

February 6, 1950 - June 11, 2015

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Deborah Ann Thelen Ellis, 65, passed away on Thursday, June 11, 2015 at her residence in Lakeside Park, Kentucky. She was a registered nurse with St. Elizabeth Healthcare for 42 years, beginning in 1971 and retiring in 2013. Deborah was a member of Blessed Sacrament Church, a member of the Girl Scouts, a life member of NKU Friends of Steely Library, and a life member of The Great Smoky Mountains Association. She enjoyed hiking, cooking, traveling, reading and she was an avid gardener and an accomplished china painter. Deborah was preceded in death by her parents: Adolph L. and Marian V. Thelen. Deborah was married to her loving husband of 45 years, Ron Ellis, on June 26, 1970 in West Berlin, Germany. Also surviving is her son: Zach Ellis; Sister: Donna (Howard) Roser; brother: Dave (Connie) Thelen; nieces: Laura (Erich) Wagner and Michelle (Mike) Callender and nephew: Eric (Sarah) Thelen. Visitation will be at Connley Brothers Funeral Home in Latonia, Kentucky on Tuesday, June 16, 2015 from 4-7 P.M. Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will be at Blessed Sacrament Church on Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 10 A.M. Memorials are suggested to Notre Dame Academy, 1699 Hilton Drive, Park Hills, Kentucky 41011 ( or St. Elizabeth Hospice, 483 South Loop Drive, Edgewood, Kentucky 41017. Online condolences may be expressed at


Connie Vater Spaw - Jul 5, 2015

Ron, I just heard about Debbie’s death from my sister, Kim.
So sorry to hear about your great loss. My thoughts and prayers are for you and Zach.
Jim and I now live in Cold Spring and will be married 42 years this July. So long ago – since our NKU days.
With our sympathy, Jim and Connie

Kim Nickell - Jul 4, 2015

Dear Ron, So sorry to hear this news. Even though my time at NKU was brief, I have many fond memories and think of you often. We are still living in West Liberty, down the street from Uncle Merle…he’s 88 and in failing health. His body has simply worn out. BTW. We do own your book! I still remember you sitting on the stool, telling us the story you planned to write. Connie’s little sister, Kim Nickell

Carol & Joe - Jun 25, 2015

She was a wonderful person, beautiful smile and so smart, now she can enjoy total freedom.

Kathy Warken - Jun 25, 2015

So sorry to hear of Debbie’s passing, she was a wonderful nurse. She was kind & respectvul to all she met. She will be missed by all. Keeping her and her family in my prayers at this most difficult time.

Lisa - Jun 24, 2015

I am so sorry to hear of your loss.
Debbie was a very nice person to work with.

Judy Schneider - Jun 17, 2015

I was so sorry to read about Debbie, I had the privilege to know Debbie as a great resource at St. Elizabeth, she was always there with a smile to answer our questions and make sure we protected our patients and ourselves from harm. The community has lost a knowledge and kind nurse. May God bless you with an abundance of wonderful memories

Bill and Vicki Poynter - Jun 17, 2015

So sorry to hear about Debbie, I just found out today. Debbie was a joy to know and a wonderful neighbor. Our condolences go out to you and the family. God Bless

Kim Guffey - Jun 16, 2015

Dear Ronnie and Zach,
Debbie has been an important part of my life for as long as I can remember. You all feel more like family to me and I am grateful for our friendship. It’s going to be weird without her at future celebrations…
She was so special. Her energy lighted everything up. Debbie really lived in the moment and stayed present. When she talked to you, you’d feel like you were the most important person in the world! She was so sincere and genuine; kind and compassionate. I’ll always remember her smile and the light in her eyes. Debbie was a great role model to me and Carrie. (like a really cool aunt) She was there for all our milestones- her memory will always inspire me to be kinder, gentler and more peaceful. Loved her and thank God we had her throughout the ups and downs.
Delivering the Dixie news as a kid, I remember always ringing your doorbell, hoping to get a visit with her to myself. It was always a bummer when she wasn’t home. (not sure why I remember that so vividly)
Please, take good care of yourselves as you grieve this most wonderful wife and mother of yours. Maya Angelou said, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” This makes me think of Debbie and all those she served in her nursing career over the years. Imagine how many people she touched and made feel better at work- in addition to all her friends and family! What a legacy of love that we are all so proud of.
So truly sorry for your loss. Grieve well.
Love, Kim


This heartfelt message is to give sympathy, comfort, and caring to help you through this difficult time. We will pray for you and your entire family. Eileen and Ken

Jules G. Franko - Jun 16, 2015

Ron and Family,
I am very sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

sue hosey - Jun 16, 2015

Debbie was an inspiration to many through her caring heart and her valiant battle. Knowing her was a blessing.
Thoughts are with you.

Davey Suetholz - Jun 16, 2015

Dear Ron and Zach,
Our hearts hurt for the loss of Debbie. You are in our thoughts and prayers. We love you.
Davey, Ellen, Phoebe and Fiona

Richard & Sherry Kiefer - Jun 15, 2015

We pray that your heart and soul will find peace during this difficult time. Our deepest sympathy is with you.
Ron, we were best friends from high school, summer construction and our band. I remember when you two started dating, and we talked every day about our girl friends. We both married those sweethearts. Deb was your life and soul. May she rest in peace until we see her in heaven.
Love to you and your family,
Rick & Sherry

The Wilber's Family - Jun 15, 2015

So very sorry for your loss; know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and Zach.
Such a wise, beautiful women truly a blessing to many…..

Pam Puterbaugh - Jun 15, 2015

Gone too soon….. Just a beautiful soul in every way.
Ron and Zach, she was truly a gift.
Pam Puterbaugh, DCH friend

Pam House Fisk - Jun 15, 2015

Ron you and Zach have our sympathies, we are so sorry for your loss. Prayers for finding peace, and holding on to many wonderful memories. May God send his choicest blessings to you and your family,

Theresa Schneider-Eubank - Jun 15, 2015

Met Debbie at NKU nursing program and again during our careers wonderful and gracious lady. My prayers are with you during this time.

Henry Eide - Jun 14, 2015

I am so sorry that we have lost Debbie. It was so nice to become your friend in West Berlin. Those were very interesting times. Memories of the great friends we all met there will be with me forever. My sympathies are with you Ron and Zach. Henry Eide, Opa

Sarah and Eric - Jun 13, 2015

Debbie was a ray of sunshine in our lives and it’s hard to fathom that she’s gone. She had such genuine beauty inside and out – and she was always so much fun to be around. We love her and will continue to talk about her often. Sending the biggest hug and many prayers to Ron and Zach.
Sarah, Eric (Stella, Sloane and Bear, too!)

Bob Weber - Jun 13, 2015

Ron, I am most sorry for your loss and also for my inability to express my condolences personally. We are leaving on vacation Sunday. I know you lost a wonderful wife who loved you dearly. She was a pleasure to work with for over 20 years and she bragged about you and Zach often. God be with you and Zach

Ann Welch - Jun 13, 2015

My thoughts are with you and your family.
With caring,
Ann Welch

The Trott Family - Jun 13, 2015

Words are inadequate…..But we hope that Ron and Zach are sustained by the memories of the girl who had it all. She loved every part of life, from the smallest flower to the countries that she visited. She is a wonderful role model for those of us fortunate enough to know her. She will be deeply missed but her spirit will live on in each of us!

Helene and Bob - Jun 13, 2015

I thank God for the blessing and grace of Debbie’s friendship and love. Her beauty, her talents and gifts will be forever missed. She made the world a better place.

Ken Gunkel - Jun 13, 2015

My heart is heavy with the sad news of Debbie’s passing. I know she’s the love of your life, Ron. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Brent & Anita Scharfenberger - Jun 13, 2015

When we think of compassion, great love, gentle soul, devoted wife & mother, courageous, beautiful spirit, we will always remember Debbie. We are blessed to have her as part of our family.

Patty and Kevin - Jun 12, 2015

The woman who showed us how to appreciate beauty ….

Dave and Bev Willman - Jun 12, 2015

Thoughts and prayers to you and Zack. So glad to have known Debbie. She left us too soon.

Mary and Mike - Jun 12, 2015

Best friend ever. Love her. Miss her.

Bob DeMott - Jun 12, 2015

Dear Ron and Zach and Thelen family :
Kate Fox and I send our deepest sympathies and sincerest regards to you in this difficult time. We remember Deb with great fondness and pleasure and know no words can express or ease your grief.
Bob DeMott, Kate Fox

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