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Ella Sophia Simpson, 99, died June 17, 2007, at her daughter’s home in Halfway.
There will be a celebration of her life at 5 p.m. Saturday at the Lions Club Hall in Halfway. Family and friends are invited to a reception afterward.
She will be buried Aug. 13 at the Fairmont Cemetery in Spokane, Wash., where her husband, Dan, her son and grandson also are buried.
Ella was born on Oct. 3, 1907, just outside the town of Fruitland, Wash., to Magnus W. and Nellie H. Etue Brown. She had three sisters and four brothers and she was the last surviving sibling.
Ella attended schools at Fruitland and Miles, Wash., and graduated from high school. She was very athletic and was active in all school sports. The girls baseball team took top honors in her senior year.
She played basketball and loved to ride horses. She participated in any horse-racing event she could find.
Ella also had a great love and talent for music. She played the violin and piano and sang at dances and church events with two of her musical brothers.
She was a hard worker. She worked at the U.S. Calvary hospital in Miles, Wash., while still attending school and cooked on a large wheat ranch during the summers.
In later years, she would go with her brothers to thin and pick apples. During her married years, she worked as a waitress for a short time, at a meat-packing plant and last as a grocery clerk in the neighborhood store.
Ella met Daniel S. Simpson from Miles, Wash., when she was 17. They married at age 21 and had been married for 70 years when Dan died in 1998. They had five children.
Her favorite recreation was fishing and camping with her family and friends. The backwater from the Columbia after Coulee Dam was built created the most beautiful and perfect place for this, right in the backyard of where she and her husband had grown up. They had many fond memories of these camp outs.
Ella always had at least two grandchildren with her and sometimes more. She was a great mother, housekeeper and cook.
She was a longtime resident of Spokane, Wash. She only left Spokane because of her failing health and the need to have someone with her at all times.
She moved to Halfway in 2001. She was a member of the Ledgerwood Presbyterian Church at Spokane.
Survivors include her daughters and sons-in-law, Bill and Veryl Waldron of Halfway and Joseph and Nadine Good of Spokane, Wash.; a son, Jerry Simpson of Halfway; 13 grandchildren, Carol Olson of Cavanaugh, Wash., Kathy Campbell of The Dalles, Diane and Valarie Simpson of Las Vegas, Nev., Linda Bault of Spokane, Wash., Christine Bennett of Kimberly, Idaho, Collen Spence of Australia, Lance Simpson of Irrigon, Meriann Digges, Ron Neal, Rick Simpson, Brian Simpson and Jenny Gulick, all of Halfway; 33 great-grandchildren and nine great-great-grandchildren, with two more expected in a few weeks.
Ella was preceded in death by her husband, Dan; an infant who died at birth in 1955; a son, Dan, who died in 1967 after a car accident; a grandson, David Good, who died in 2003; and great-grandchild, Benji Bault.
Memorial contributions may be made to Pine Valley Presbyterian Church’s Memorial Fund or The Salvation Army through Tami’s Pine Valley Funeral Home, P.O. Box 543, Halfway, OR 97834.
Used with permission from: Baker City Herald, Baker City, Oregon, August 3, 2007
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor