A Celebration of Ava Russell’s Life was held on Sunday, Jan. 2, 2005, 1 p.m. at the Community Connection Senior Center in Baker City.
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Friends were invited to join the family following the service for a luncheon prepared by the V.F.W. Auxiliary at the Senior Center.
Ava Jane was born on April 17, 1940, in Carson, Ore., to Henry and Luella Thompson Hunsaker. She was raised early on in Carson, attending schools in Halfway, then onto Baker City and Umatilla. Ava also attended Business College for two years in Baker City.
Ava married Paul Russell on Aug. 8, 1970. in Baker City. Together they lovingly blended a family of seven children. Ava loved to crochet, do any craft, play cards, enjoyed a good yard sale, cheering on her favorite baseball team, work puzzles and she enjoyed reading mystery books. Elvis Presley was her heartthrob, and peanuts in her Pepsi was her gift to family tradition. Ava enjoyed bowling, at one time she bowled on three leagues. An unknown accomplishment was that she had held the state champion arm wrestling title for five years running earlier in her life.
Ava had worked for Community Connection Senior Center for well over 20 years. During her career with them, she wore several hats. First she was the meals on wheels driver, then the assistant cook, moving to the bus driver, and these last years her title was receptionist. She always had a pleasant word, a wonderful smile, a hug, for all who met her in a day. She will be missed by all who knew and were touched by her kind heart and sweet spirit.
Ava is survived by her husband, Paul; daughters, Jamie Little-Bottoms and husband William, Laura and Brian Love, and Darcy and Travis McCauley; sons, Lance and Starla Holt, Danny Little, Rusty and Kerri Little and Michael Little; brother, Bert and Glenda Hunsaker; sisters, Wanda Zemmer, Berdene Tidwell, Linda and Mike Blakley and Ione and Dick McCraney; brother-in-law, Larry Hottell; 16 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her parents; her twin sister, Iva Hottell in 1994; sisters, Marion Sloan who died in 2000 and Anna Mae Schneider who died in 1948; and brother-in-law, Jerry Zemmer who died in 1991.
Those who wish to make a memorial donation in memory of Ava may do so to the Senior Center through Tami’s Pine Valley Funeral Home, P.O. Box 543, Halfway, OR 97834.
Used with permission from: The Record Courier, Baker City, Oregon, January, 2005
Transcribed by: Belva Ticknor