Lela Woffinden


Lela Woffinden
March 9, 1911 - March 21, 2012

Lela B. Woffinden was born in Ammon, Idaho, in a modest farmhouse on March 9, 1911, the third surviving child to Leonard Garfield Ball and Ressa Hiatt Ball. She passed away on March 21, 2012, at her Tracy, Calif., residence. Her mother died when Lela was 12 and Lela assisted in the care of her three younger sisters, Lucille, Wanda and Donetta. After high school graduation she moved to Salt Lake City, where she attended business college. She later returned home and married Alfred Norell Poulter. They had a son, Raymond. They were divorced in 1936. In 1937 her oldest sister's husband (Myrtle and Lavearl Lindsey) was transferred to Toppenish, Wash., with the U & I Sugar Company and Lela and Raymond moved with them. Lela attended business college in Yakima and worked at Montgomery Ward Company, where she established and managed the new catalog order department. Later she worked as a secretary and bookkeeper at the Hull Ranch in Yakima.

After World War II, Stanley Woffinden returned from his U.S. Army service and went looking for his sister's best friend, Lela. After a brief courtship, they were married on Feb. 14, 1946. They had a daughter, Carol, in 1947 and son, Gary, in 1950. The family made its home in Sunnyside, where Stanley farmed and Lela was an insurance agent, real estate broker and later managed the Lower Valley Credit Union for 23 years until her retirement at age 75 in 1986. She moved to Tracy in 1997. She loved music and her therapy for life was working, especially in the dirt. She loved to grow roses and walked a mile a day until she was 98.

Lela is survived by children, Raymond (Eleanor) Poulter of Costa Mesa, Calif., Carol (Willard) Fairbanks of Walla Walla and Gary (Mary) Woffinden of Tracy, Calif. She is also survived by two sisters, Donetta Elliot of San Antonio, Texas, and Emmalyn (Bob) Degen, Emmette, Idaho; and a brother, Richard (Bonnie) Ball of St. George, Utah. Lela was preceded in death by her husband, Stanley Woffinden, in 1989. She also has 20 grandchildren, 39 great-grandchildren and 15 great-great-grandchildren.

She was a member of the LDS Church. Viewing will be at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 30, 2012, followed by funeral services at 11 a.m. at the Sunnyside Ward chapel on Factory Road. She will be laid to rest with her husband in the Lower Valley Memorial Gardens in Sunnyside.


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