Cooking 02

Willa M. Speers

May 23, 1926 ~ July 2, 2020 (age 94)


Willa M. Speers
May 23, 1926 - July 2, 2020

Our Mother went to be with the Lord and her Savior peacefully at the age of 94 in her home  with family by her side in McKinleyville.

She was born on May 23, 1926 in Hot Springs, Arkansas to Benjamin and Ruie Miller. She was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother. Her whole life centered her family and relationship with her church.

She was one of 13 children. She left school in the eighth grade to help her mother raise the children. She married Orville F. Speers on April 29, 1944. They had three children, Carl, Dwayn and Loreda.

When the children were little she expressed a desire to to go to work. She first picked green beans in Oregon. They moved to California because of Orville’s work. First they lived on Kneeland. Then decided to move to McKinleyville.

Her first job here in California was at Eureka Fisheries shelling oysters. Soon she went to work at Trinity Hospital. She then took a job at Overholts Rest Home. A few years later she along with her good friend, Edna Vickery opened a burger bar in McKinlevyiile, up by the Shell station. Someone told her of a job opening at The Towers in Arcata, a smorgasbord. She found her calling. After a few years, she learned of a new position at the Samoa Cookhouse. She applied and got the job as head cook. She worked there for over 20 years and loved it. She loved making the breads, soups and main dishes the most. She had the opportunity to cook for a broad range of people. She retired when she was 67 years old.

She loved to camp and go in their motorhome. She loved to be with her family and friends.

She was a devoted member of Abundant Life Center for over 70 years. She loved her church family. Loved teaching others about Jesus. She rarely missed a Sunday. She lived a good Christian life for everyone to see.

Willa is survived by her children, Carl and Linda Speers of Peanut, California. Dwayn and Judy Speers of Yuba City, California. Loreda Kauffman of McKinleyville. By her grandchildren Darin and Cindi Speers, Rob and Monica Speers, Tammy Richards, Regina and Stephen Pineschi, Heather Kauffman, Heath Kauffman, Denise and Jason Little and Jeff Wood. Also by 17 great grandchildren, seven great-great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephew’s. She is also survived by one brother, Donald Ray Miller of McKinleyville.

She was proceeded in death by her husband of 66 years, Orville F. Speers. Her son-in-law, Robert G. Kauffman Jr. Her parents Benjamin and Ruie Miller. Her siblings, Clarence Miller, Rector Miller, Paul Miller, Odell Miller, Jewell D. Miller, Nettie Bee Davis, Betty Lou Breshears, Pauline Cockman, Wayne Miller, Kenneth Miller, and Joyce Miller.

Our sincere thanks to Ashley Dennis for her kind and loving care of our mother. Also, to Hospice of Humboldt for their care and kindness. To Dr. Marclle Mahan for all of your care and compassion for our mother. Thank you Sandy at Paul’s Chapel for your help and guidance. The congregation of Telios Christian Fellowship for your prayers, love and support.

Due to the current Covid-19 guidelines the family had a private ceremony at Sunset Memorial Park.

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