Virginia McFarland Williams Born in Lebanon MO on June 26, 1917. Passed away of natural causes in Oakland, CA on February 12, 2014 at 96 years of age, in the presence of family. A memorial tea service to celebrate her life will be held at the Ukiah Garden Club on April 5th at 2:00. Virginia McFarland came to California in 1921 with her three older siblings and parents Commodore Perry McFarland and Amie Luthy McFarland. The family traveled in a Ford Model T over dirt roads, settling in Riverside. During World War II she trained with the CAA as an air traffic controller and was stationed in various locations across the western United States. In 1950 she moved to Ukiah to help her sister, Louise Johnson, open Fabric Lane, Ukiah's first yardage store, and a year later married James E. Williams, descendent of a pioneer Ukiah family. They were married for 54 years, until his death in 2006. When their two children were older she worked for PG&E in the Ukiah office until her retirement. Community service was always important to Virginia. She loved music and was an active and enthusiastic board member of the Ukiah Community Concert Association for 60 years. She served as its first woman president, and worked to secure elevated concert seating for the high school cafetorium. She loved to garden, and kept a beautiful yard filled with flowers, fruit trees and vegetables. She enjoyed canning jam from her own fruit and berry bushes, and was a 50 year plus member of the Garden Club where she chaired the Christmas tea for many years. Virginia's hard work, determination and independent spirit will be missed by those who knew her. She loved politics and was a member of the League of Women voters for many years. Family was central to her, and she enjoyed many trips and reunions with siblings and extended relatives in California and throughout the US and Canada to visit her large extended family. Virginia was preceded in death by her husband James and her sisters Helen Tuve, Louise Johnson and Caroline Powell, and her brother Frank McFarland. She is survived by her son Bruce and daughter-in-law Andrea Williams of Riverview Michigan, her daughter Amy and son-in-law Drew Johnson of Oakland, and grandchildren Scott Williams and Emma Johnson, as well as her sister Betty Jean Terri of North Hollywood, along with many nieces and nephews. In lieu of flowers contributions may be made to the Mendocino County Historical society or to Plowshares. She will be interred at Russian River cemetery in Ukiah alongside her husband.
Published in Ukiah Daily Journal from Mar. 27 to Mar. 30, 2014