Small Town News


Pippen Wirth

Ajo Copper News of Ajo, Arizona

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Pippen Wirth, 81, died in Oro valley on September 15, 2015.

She was born October 5, 1933, in Omaha, Texas, to Jeff & Ora (Alexander) Burkhead. Named Mildred Jean, her brother took a look at his tiny new sister and said, "Well, ain't that a Pippen!" and the nickname stuck for the rest of her life.

She came to Ajo with her family in 1937 and lived here the rest of her life.

Said her family, reminiscing, "For a lot of people, when they think of Ajo — they think of Pippen Wirth. Pippen loved growing up in Ajo. She loved to tell the story of how her daddy moved to Ajo and slept in the park until he could raise enough money to get the rest of the family there all the way from Texas. That was in 1937 when Pippen was only 4 years old. Several years later she even won Miss Ajo in 1948. She was so beautiful inside and out.

"Pippen married Earl Wirth in 1952. She admits she had had a crush on him since she was 12 years old. They had their only son Bob in 1953. Pippen loved to entertain people, loved to cook for everyone, loved to dance and go to the rodeos.

"She loved to laugh and her laugh was so contagious. She also loved the desert and all of its beauty. If you couldn't get a hold of Pippen and Earl — chances are they were 'tootn' around in the desert. Pippen was also the definition of a grandma. She always had time for her grandkids and great grandkids. She would even play any game they asked her to from dolls to cars and trucks.

"Pippen loved and cherished all of her family and friends. They are what mattered most to her in life. She is also what mattered most to us. She will be forever missed as she took a piece of our hearts with her."

She is remembered by many for her passion for the desert and for working at the Elks Lodge.

Mrs. Wirth was preceded in death by her parents and by her brother Jim Burkhead.

She is survived by her husband, Earl Wirth; by her son & daughter-in-law, Bob & Becky Wirth; by her sister Mary Beth Langdon; by her granddaughters & their spouses, Mindy & Jimmy Edwards and Cristy & Rob Dyer; and by her great-grandchildren, Dj Langston, Owen & Caleb Edwards and Keaton & Kyle Dyer.

A celebration of life will be held for Pippen Wirth on Friday, October 2, at 5 p.m. at the Elks Lodge.

Copyright 2015 Ajo Copper News, Ajo, Arizona. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: September 22, 2015

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