Barbara LaVerne Wilker, 82, passed away peacefully October 14, 2013 at A Beautiful Living Adult Family Home surrounded by her beloved caregivers. She was born January 1, 1931 to Elmer and Alta Hunsaker in Burke, SD. The family, including brothers Melvin and Merle, moved to Bremerton, WA in 1939. Barbara graduated from Bremerton High School in 1949 and then worked as a waitress, a popcorn girl at a theater, and an electronics clerk. She met Joseph Gale Wilker at a Belfair Barn Dance and they married in 1952. They lived in Seattle and she went to work for the Boeing Co. from 1953-1956. They bought a brand new home in Federal Way and Barbara became a homemaker and together raised four daughters. Her great interests were bowling, crocheting, sewing, camping and taking care of family. In 1968, when Joe needed to move closer to the Everett Boeing Plant, they bought a home in Alderwood Manor and planted dwarf fruit trees in the large yard. Barbara enjoyed making homemade apple pies using her mothers secret recipe for the crust and watching The Seattle Seahawks and The Mariners on TV was a favorite past time. When Joe passed away in 1994, Barbara continued taking care of the big 2 story home until buying a condo across the street from her favorite Fred Meyer Store in 2004. Barbara started showing signs of dementia in 2010, moved to assisted living and one year later found the very loving home at A Beautiful Living. Barbara was preceded in death by her husband, Joe and brother, Merle. She is survived by brother, Melvin and his family; daughters, Reita (Steve), Sandy (Dan), Paula (Jeff) and Julie (Mike); grandsons, Ryan, Jesse, Drew and Joseph; granddaughters, Bonnie, Nicole, Malia and Jennifer. A very special "thank you" goes to Virginia Yanos, RN and all the wonderful caregivers at ABL for making mom's last year so enjoyable. Even though the dementia was making her remember "The Good Old Days" vividly, she was so happy to call all the caregivers "daughters" because they called her "momma". Services will be graveside in The Rose Garden at Floral Hills Cemetery at 1 p.m., Saturday, November 2, 2013.
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Published in The Herald (Everett) from Oct. 27 to Nov. 9, 2013