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Arlene Anne Updyke

November 16, 1929 - December 16, 2021

Arlene Anne Updyke slipped quietly into the presence of her Lord on Thursday morning, December 16, 2021.  She is reunited with her beloved husband, Kenneth Updyke, and is survived by her three children, Amy, Elizabeth, and Bruce as well as eleven grandchildren and ten great-grandchildren.

Arlene was born into the Hafford family in El Paso, Texas on November 16, 1929.  She grew up in a loving family with four brothers and two sisters.  When she was six years old, Arlene’s family moved to Bremerton, Washington. After graduating, she went to Tacoma General Hospital School of Nursing where she became a registered nurse.  Feeling the call of God to be a missionary, she attended Baptist Bible College in New York for Biblical studies where she fell in love and married Kenneth Updyke, a driven young man who was heading to Africa.  In 1956, Ken and Arlene traveled to Ghana, West Africa as full-time missionaries.

Arlene served as a nurse, wife, mother, and missionary in Ghana for 32 years.  When she and Ken retired from their African service they began a new ministry in the city of Tacoma, Washington.  Initially, they served in Beacon Baptist Church and then later at Temple Baptist Church.  Arlene had a true servant’s heart for her church, her neighborhood, and even those she met in the grocery store, and was always sharing the joy and hope found in the Lord Jesus Christ.

She had a keen sense of humor and kept a thousand funny stories or jokes in her head to tell at a moment’s notice.  She was often considered the life of the party, and she loved to make people laugh. She also was an encourager.  More significantly, however, Arlene was deeply devoted to her Savior, Jesus Christ.  She was an example of Christ to everyone who encountered her.

A celebration of life service for Arlene will be hosted by Temple Baptist Church on January 29, 2022, at 2:00 PM.  If desired, donations can be made in her honor to the Ghana Field Fund (account number 801200) in c/o Baptist Mid Missions: www.bmm.org | 440-826-3930

“Goodbyes are not forever; goodbyes are not the end. They simply mean we’ll miss you until we meet again!”

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.

John 11:25

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