Royce Neal Fifer
1928 - 2013
Royce Neal Fifer, 84, passed away at his home on June 29, 2013 after a brave battle with cancer.
Royce was born in 1928 to Wilbur J. and Doris V. Fifer in Kansas, but later moved to Missouri. In 1941, Wilbur and Doris moved their family to Emmett. His father, Wilbur, passed away in April of 1946 and Royce became the man of the family, and his mother became Royce's biggest fan.
He left school to join the U.S. Army
Air Corps on February 5, 1946, at the tender age of 17 and was stationed as a Private in Alaska and the Aleutian Islands. He would tell you to this day that he did it to help support his family after his father Wilbur passed away. This pretty much set the stage for everything that Royce did in his life - he had a heart of gold. He tried so hard to hide it at times, but everyone who knew him knew the truth!
Royce was married in 1949 and was gifted with four children; Sandra, Rhondy, Wilbur, and Kathy. They would try him at times, but they were truly what he lived for. he worked every job he could find to ensure that they had everything that he could possibly provide for them.
Royce later married the love of his life, Vera Mae Wederski John, (who also happened to be his next door neighbor) and they spent the rest of Vera's life together. Vera brought her three children, Melva, Ronald, and Larry Dale into the marriage, and Royce treated them as his own. Royce and Vera had an amazing bond that would never be broken. They made it through seven kids, Royce's time as a race car driver, owning and running an auto body together, as well as an antique store, and the restoration and showing of many antique cars together. Royce would do the body work and Vera would sew the interior- they truly loved each other dearly and were best friends.
Royce had the work ethic of no other - he worked at the Emmett Sawmill, Herlong Army ordinance, the Bellingham Ship Yards, he drove truck for his step-dad as well as several others, and he worked for the State of Idaho. His pride, however, was opening, successfully operating, and retiring from Roy's Repair and Sales. He did amazing body and paint work and he set the bar high. He and his son Wilbur worked together for many years, and he took great pride in what "rolled out the door". After his retirement, he and Wilbur ran Fifer and Sons Trucking - his heart was always in a car deal somewhere!
Royce and Vera bought a dirt lot in Yuma, Arizona, and eventually built a beautiful home, which they spent many happy winters in before Vera passed away in 2008. Some very special friends and neighbors were made by Royce and Vera in Yuma - friends that would last a lifetime.
Royce was diagnosed with cancer in 2008 and fought it with the level of bravery and character that only he could exhibit.
Royce was preceded in death by his Mother, Doris, and his Father, Wilbur, His brother Larry K, his only son, Wilbur, and his wife, Vera. He was also preceded in death by two granddaughters, Cali and Rhondy Mae, and his step-sons, Ronald and Larry Dale. Royce is survived by his daughters, Sandra, Rhondy, and Kathy, and his step-daughter, Melva, his sister, Delores, as well as his many loving grandchildren and great grandchildren. Graveside services will be held July 19th at 11 a.m. at the Emmett Cemetery. Our deepest appreciation to St. Al's Cancer Care Center and Horizon hospice of Emmett. Donations to Cancer Care Center in Royce's Name.