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Willie Inez (Billie) McBride, 94, of Salinas, passed away Monday, June 30, 2014. She was born April 22, 1920, to Jess and Eula Davis in Columbus, KS.
She came to California in 1940 with her cousin Juanita and settled quickly into work in the produce sheds in Salinas. As most did she followed the produce as far as Yuma AZ, to southern CA and the Central Valley where she met and married her first husband, Robert Wasson. They settled in Salinas and had their only child, Sally D. James-Douglas. Billie then took on the role of housewife. Bob passed unexpectedly in 1973. Still young in years, she met and married Arthur McBride in Santa Cruz. They resided in Salinas. She could often be found assisting him in the snack bar at the Salinas Courthouse. Art also preceded her in death. Each of the marriages lasted more than 20 years.
Billie was an active woman. She was a member of the Salinas Moose, American Legion Post #31, and the Disabled American Veterans. In younger years, she enjoyed dancing and going to parties. She had a fabulous green thumb and could nurture anything from a seed or cutting. She was very proud of her beautiful rose garden and hated to leave it when the house was sold. She brought the orchids with her though and tended to them at her daughters and grandson's homes.
Nana, as her three grandsons called her, was proud and doting. Attending all their sporting events from little league through high school. Then came great-grandchildren and the doting continued. She babysat, took them to the park, read and practiced numbers and the alphabet. Attending her oldest great-granddaughter's graduation was one of her favorite milestones. Nana was also an avid fisherman and made sure she bought the first pole for all the boys in the family. You didn't have to ask her twice to go fishing, boating or camping, she rode her first jet-ski at 81. She loved going to the casinos, playing bunco and bingo! She enjoyed living near Tahoe at her daughter's house for a few years before moving back to Salinas.
She was preceded in death by her sister, Freddie Bonbrake and her brother, Jack Davis, both of Columbus, KS.
She is survived by her daughter, Sally (Rusty) James-Douglas of Pollock Pines; three grandsons, Bill (Allyson) Pumphrey of Spreckels, Mike (Mary) James and Rob (Andria) James of Salinas, and six great-grandchildren, Rebecca and Timothy Pumphrey of Spreckels, Emma, Aiden, Benjamin and Kaitlynn James, all of Salinas.
A Graveside service will be held at 11:00 a.m. Monday, July 7, 2014, at Garden Of Memories Cemetery, 850 Abbott St., Salinas, CA 93901. Burial will follow.
Memorials can be made to DAV Chapter 85, 220 12th St., Marina, CA 93933
Funeral arrangements by Struve and Laporte Funeral Home.
For more information and to share a memory, visit www.struveandlaporte.com.
Struve and Laporte Funeral Chapel
41 West San Luis Salinas, CA 93901
Published in The Salinas Californian from July 3 to July 7, 2014