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Grace Ernestine Fenske

Fenske_Grace.jpgGrace Ernestine Fenske, 94, died Saturday, September 29, 2012 at Alpine Way Retirement Center in Shelton, WA. She was born April 19, 1918 in Marshfield, WI to Clyde and Orilla (Michaelis) Leonhardt. Grace received her education in the Wood County Public School; Marshfield’s McKinley High School and Wood County Teachers College in Wisconsin Rapids. She taught rural one room schools for six years. Grace married Marvin Fenske in Vesper, WI on June 3, 1929. When Grace was two months old she went to Bismark, ND with her parents where they worked for a wheat and cattle rancher. In the following December of 1918 during the height of the World War I influenza epidemic, both parents died, Orillia’s sister, Cora took charge of returning the eight month old Grace and the bodies of her parents to their home city. Grace was cared for by her mother’s sister, Elsie Poppy and her family.
At Elsie’s death three years later her daughter Irene, continued her care. At five years of age Grace was taken to Grandmother Michaelis to be cared for. She began school in Bakerville and in the middle of grade two, Cora and her new husband, Bernard McTavish became her legal guardians. She lived with them until her marriage.
Grace and her husband Marvin were dairy farmers until 1962 when they moved to Washington State. After settling in Shelton she worked at the nursing home for six years and at Mason General Hospital for 15 years. She helped her husband develop  a U-Cut Christmas Tree operation on their Cloquallum Road farm which they ran for about 20 years and used draft horses to give rides. At the on-set of Marvin’s illness, they moved to a retirement village in Shelton; the farm was sold after his death.
Grace was a member of Mt. Olive Lutheran Church. She had a passion for gardening and shared the bounty of her garden. Her hobby was making quilts for charities. Grace also enjoyed wagon trains, camping, traveling in their motorhome and volunteering at Son Rise Outreach for years.
Grace is survived by her grandchildren, Rob Daley of Shelton, WA, Steven Tomfohrde of Duluth, MN , Richard Tomfohrde (Karen) of Minneapolis, MN, Sharon Pearson (Roger) of Shelton, WA and six great grandchildren.
She is preceded in death by her parents, Clyde and Orillia Leonhardt, husband, Marvin Fenske and daughter, Mary Hoepfner. Memorial contributions may be sent to Son Rise Outreach, PO box 661, Shelton, WA 98584.
An inurnment service will be held at Shelton Memorial Park on Friday, October 5, 2012 at 11:00am. The family was served by McComb Funeral Home, Shelton, WA.


Melvin Raymond Little

Little_Mel.jpgMelvin Raymond Little 79, of Shelton, Washington died September 26, 2012 at Fir Lane Convalesant Center with his wife Catherine at his side after suffering a stroke on September 14, 2012.
He leaves his wife of 60 years, Catherine (Russell) Little; son, Michael Little and his wife Jeannie(Graham) of Lewistown,Montana; daughters, Elaine Little and her companion David Sykes of Ballantine, Montana and daughter Peggy Zamzow and her husband Mark of Shelton,Washington; six grandchildren, Allen Cathers of Phoeniz, Arizona; Wayne Little of Shelton, Michele Hope, Kent Little, Jody Cathers all of Lewistown, Montana and Corey Zamzow of Shelton; brothers, Jerry Little of Tieton, Washington and Ted Little of Shelton. 11 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and close friends. He was preceded in death by his father Edward in 1974, his mother Dorothy in 1998, two infant brothers, a brother Gerald in 1958 and brother Marvin in 1985.  
Born and raised in Naches, Washington he was the son of Edward Walter Little and Dorothy Lena (Field) Little. In his early years, along with his parents and brothers, were members of the Boot and Spur Club in Naches where they would rodeo and ride posse.
On March 7, 1952 Melvin married his sweetheart, Catherine Russell also of Naches, Washington. It was in spring of 1955 when Melvin moved his young family to Shelton. He would work for Simpson Timber Company at the Insulation Board Plant until 1973 when he bought his first business. Melvin owned "Mel’s Shell" along with his wife Cathy until 1983 when he sold for the "Life of Retirement". It only took him a few months of mending fences to realize that it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be and went back to working! He purchased a semi truck and leased out to Morgan Trucking so he could cruise the interstate along side of his son Mike who also had his own truck.  1994 he again retired and began their life of snow birding between Parker Arizona, Lewistown, Montana and Shelton. During the course of their travels they met a lot of people and made many friends. Due to an on going illness with his wife Cathy, they returned to the place they had always called home, Shelton.
Melvin also belonged to the local Elk's Fraternity, local jeep club "Timber Runners", and the Old Car Club of Olympia. He enjoyed all old car events and tours. He also enjoyed camping with his family and riding horses with his son and daughter in law. He had a love that ran deep for his family and has left a hole that no other can fill.
Melvin’s family would like to extend a special thanks to all his neighbors for getting him medical attention as quickly as they did. Also a special thanks to all the staff at Mason General Hospital and Fir Lane Convalesant Center for the excellent care they gave and the compassion they displayed to the family during this difficult time. "Thank You"!
A memorial is being planned for a future date.


Barbara R. Smith

Smith_Barbara.jpgBarbara Ruth Smith, 91, passed away at her home on Saturday, September 22, 2012 surrounded by her family. Barbara was born on June 18, 1921 to John and Della (Ingram) Bailey in Cleveland, OK. She attended school in Oklahoma and married Roy Smith in September of 1938 in Chandler, OK. Mrs. Smith was a homemaker and a foster mother. She tended to over 40 children over a four year period and also taught airbrushing for a short time. As a teenager, Barbara studied with the Salvation Army.
After her marriage, she and her husband moved to California. In 2005, she moved to Shelton to be closer to her grandchildren. Her hobbies included painting (in all mediums), photography, jewelry making, and crafting. She did an amazing variety of crafting projects and enjoyed trying many new things. She like large farm animals and playing the organ. She truly enjoyed spending time with family and the grandchildren.
She is survived by daughter, Chelle Williams, Shelton; sons, Jim Smith, Grants Pass, OR, Richard Smith (Denise), Laveen, AZ and Gerald Smith (Marie) Paradise, CA; 15 grandchildren and numerous great and great great grandchildren as well as many aunts, uncles and cousins.
She was preceded in death by her husband Roy. A memorial and reception will be held at Hope Chapel, 421 W.”E” St, Shelton on Saturday, October 6, 2012 at noon.
The family was served by McComb Funeral Home.