Cathy Rankin Tiemann was born on July 5, 1948 in Houston, TX and entered into eternal life on December 16, 2021. She was born to John Frazier Rankin, Sr. and Margaret Dorothy Graham Rankin and was the youngest of three children. She was raised in the Oak Forest neighborhood and attended Oak Forest Elementary, F. M. Black Middle School and Waltrip High school, as well as the University of Houston. After Cathy married James Tiemann, Sr. in 1968, they started their family in Oak Forest where they raised their three children - James, Scotty and Sarah.
Cathy loved meeting new people. You could put her in a room with 100 strangers, and she would walk out with 100 new friends. People were drawn to her warm smile, friendly face and caring eyes. She would often get someone’s life story while standing in the checkout lane at the grocery store. She was extremely easy to talk to and made everyone around her feel comfortable.
Cathy was a passionate and loyal Dallas Cowboys fan, dating back to 1964. Her father would watch the Dallas Cowboys every Sunday, and, when Cathy and James were dating, James would come over on Sundays and join them. In the 1990s, Cathy and her daughter Sarah would attend one or two Dallas Cowboys games each year at Texas Stadium. She loved going to Sports Collector’s shows, especially when they had autograph signings with retired Dallas Cowboys players. Her love and passion for the Dallas Cowboys was passed down to all three of her children.
Cathy loved adventures and took her kids on many. She especially loved telling stories from one particular trip to Sea Rim State Park.There were so many mishaps during that trip, that it could have been made into a comedy movie! There were countless trips to Bolivar, Galveston, and Burton, TX. She loved being by water and always said that she was the happiest and most at peace when she was there. She particularly liked having mother/daughter adventures, though many details were kept secret. Sometimes those adventures involved bringing home an animal.
Cathy was a huge animal lover. There was always an assortment of every type of animal that you can imagine! She was always ready to rescue an animal in her younger days, no matter how sketchy it may have been. James and Cathy had started volunteering their free time for Cocker Spaniel Rescue of East Texas many years ago after adopting their beloved Clooney and Chloe from them. In recent years, they would mostly transport dogs from one of the Houston animal shelters. Cathy loved transporting dogs from area shelters and always said that she loved seeing them perk up when the dogs realized that they were leaving the shelter for a better life. She also had convinced James to become fosters despite already having several dogs of their own. Fostering brought her so much joy. She especially loved to foster puppies, and, yes, they were foster failures a few times. Cathy kept in touch with many of the adopters of dogs that they had fostered and always loved receiving updates. She also ran the rescue hotline for a few years and would screen potential adopters, often forming friendships with many of them.
Cathy was a huge Elvis Presley fan and part of the Houston Elvis Meetup Group. She went on many Elvis tribute artist-related trips which included cruises, an annual trip to Helen, Georgia, a few trips to Las Vegas and countless trips around Texas to go see some of her favorite Elvis tribute artists. Through her love for Elvis, she made many wonderful, life-long friendships. If you called Cathy's cell phone, Elvis would sing for you instead of the usual call ring!
Cathy was the secretary at Advent Lutheran Church from May 1994 through December 2013. She loved her job so much, and it often provided her with the chance to meet new people. After retirement, she remained very involved in the church, having served in several positions on the church council. She also loved decorating the church for Christmas, and even decorated the Christmas tree in the foyer just two short weeks ago.
Cathy gave her time wherever she could and was passionate about giving back to others. Many years ago, she started teaching English as a Second Language. She never charged a penny for her classes. The “thank you” that she would receive for her time and teaching was enough for her. She found great reward in teaching and formed many wonderful relationships with her students. Her favorite student of all time, Jorge, always referred to her as his "American Grandma". They had such a special relationship and loved each other so much.
Cathy loved keeping in touch with her group of high school friends and enjoyed their frequent gatherings. While in high school, she was a member of Waltrip High School's Imperial Guard. She was also still in contact with many friends from Oak Forest Elementary.
Cathy met the love of her life at her Sweet 16 birthday party. Her sister, Dorothy Artz, and her husband, John, had set it all up. James was an employee at the Texaco gas station that John and Dorothy owned, and they knew that Cathy just had to meet this boy. Cathy and James met and, after 53 years of marriage, three children, and many, many pets later, have been together ever since.
Cathy had quite the green thumb and had recently rediscovered her love for plants. She was known to post pictures of her many beautiful hibiscus blooms and other plants on Facebook on a near daily basis. Over the past year and a half, one of her absolute favorite things to do was to go to plant nurseries. She almost never left a nursery without at least one new plant, as well as at least one for Sarah! Watching the plants grow and thrive brought her so much joy and happiness.
Cathy was a great cook. One of her favorite meals to make was chicken fried steak, gravy, macaroni & cheese and green beans. Her poundcakes were also always a big hit. Her Christmas morning cinnamon rolls were a family favorite, and she especially loved planning and preparing the family Christmas meal.
Cathy valued her family and friends more than anything. There was never a time that she didn’t end her phone calls without saying “I love you!”. She loved our family gatherings, especially Christmas. It brought her so much joy to watch everyone open their Christmas presents, and she always knew the perfect gift to buy. With all of Cathy's accomplishments in life, she always said that her greatest accomplishment of all was raising her three children. She said on more than one occasion that the happiest times in her life were when she was pregnant. She had a close relationship with each one of her three kids, and each relationship was unique. She always told all three kids that she loved them more than life itself. She would also say how blessed and grateful she was that God chose her to be their mother .