Wanda Jean Pearce, 85, passed away on Friday, Oct. 2, 2009, at Bozeman Deaconess Hospital after a short illness. Wanda was born in Burbank, Calif., on June 17, 1924, to Leona and Ralph Walton.
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Wanda grew up during the Great Depression in Southern California. One of her fond memories of that time was a summer spent traveling the West with a rodeo managed by her father, Ralph.
During World War II, she went to work for Lockheed Aircraft in Burbank, Calif. She remained a faithful Lockheed employee for more than 40 years, finally retiring in 1984. Wanda and her husband, Sam, left California in 1987 for Hayden Lake, Idaho, finally moving to Bozeman in 1992.
Wanda loved traveling. She enjoyed many trips around the western United States and Canada with her family. Some of her favorite spots included Big Bear Lake, California, the Canadian Rockies, Yellowstone National Park and the red rock country of the Southwest. Later in life, her travels also took her to Australia, Hawaii and Europe.
Wanda treasured her friends and family. She maintained lifelong friendships with neighbors from her childhood hometown, she added many acquaintances from her time spent in Idaho, and she developed many close and enduring friendships while in Bozeman. For many years, she was an enthusiastic mall walker at Gallatin Valley Mall. She was also an avid golfer, both at Riverside Country Club and at Valley View Golf Club. She loved listening to good jazz, reading, visiting with her wonderful friends over lunch and participating in the local book club. Wanda particularly enjoyed spending time with her family and following her grandchildren through life from kindergarten through high school.
She is survived by her son, Bill (Linda) Wyckoff, and grandchildren, Tom and Katie, all of Bozeman.
Wanda was preceded in death by her husband, Sam; and by her parents, Leona and Ralph.
A Celebration of her Life will be held from 3 to 6 p.m., Friday, Oct. 9, at 1757 Highland Blvd., Unit 6.
Arrangements are in the care of Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service; www.dokkennelson.com.
Dokken-Nelson Funeral Service
113 South Willson Avenue
Bozeman, MT 59715
Published in Bozeman Daily Chronicle on Oct. 4, 2009