Denise was born July 11, 1956 in Spokane, Wash. to Everett and Mary Lou Bierman. Her early years were spent on the family farm near Ritzville, Wash. In the early 1960s the family moved to Priest Lake, Idaho. She grew up enjoying the beauty and outdoor activities of the area. She attended schools in Priest Lake and Priest River, where she graduated high school. Denise attended Carroll College in Helena where she earned a degree in dental hygiene. During her 30 years working as a hygienist, she always tried to provide gentle caring service to her patients. She especially enjoyed visiting with her patients and coworkers.
In 1979 she married Sherman Thornton and they had two sons. They lived in Columbus and Missoula.
On October 24, 1987 she married Jerry Lacy. They raised their four children at the family home in Thompson Falls. Denise loved spending time with her family and friends. She was a talented artist specializing in water color painting. She enjoyed bird watching, herb gardening, and fly tying. Her gentle, kind, caring spirit will be missed by all whose lives she touched.
She is survived by her husband, Jerry Lacy of Thompson Falls; sons Dan (Kim) Thornton of Rathdrum, Idaho, David Thornton (fiancé Jesselyn Bohman) of Laclede, Idaho and Jeremy (Amanda) Lacy of Kalispell; daughter, Jennifer (Jared) Gerstenberger of Post Falls, Idaho; grandsons, Ben and Sheppard; granddaughters, Kailey, Avery, Kate, and Marley; sister, Kathy Ward of Kamiah, Idaho; niece, Ashley; nephew, Rob; and dog, “Karl.”
She was preceded in death by her parents, and brother-in-law Roger Ward.
Memorial donations may be made to Sanders County Cancer Care Network or Thompson River Animal Care shelter.
Lakeview Funeral Home in Sandpoint is handling the arrangements. Please visit Denise’s online memorial at lakeviewfuneral.com and sign her guest book.