Alpha Mae (Shafer) SPENCE
1926 - 2017
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SPENCE, Alpha Mae (Shafer)
1926 - 2017

Alpha Spence was born in Tulia,Texas on November 26, 1926, and passed away on September 17, 2017. She was preceded in death by her husband of 69 years, Don; her parents Herbert and Nora Shafer; and her sisters Faye, Jean, and Francis. She is survived by her children Scott and Shannon Spence; her grandchildren: Tyler (Tammy) Spence and Rory (Cameron) Graves; and six great-grandchildren.
Alpha graduated high school at the age of 16, and moved to Los Angeles with her sister, where she met her lifetime love, Don Spence. After his discharge from the Marine Corps, they were married and spent the remainder of their lives in the Pacific Northwest, primarily in Spokane. She received her Education degree and Masters degree from EWU. While attending Eastern she was elected homecoming queen, campus sweetheart, and, being a gifted actress, performed in numerous plays. Upon graduation she spent most of her career at Mead High School as an English teacher and girls counselor.
Alpha enjoyed bridge, crossword puzzles, was an avid reader, as well as horseback riding, skiing, golf, but most of all, her family. She was a wonderful and loving mother, grandmother "Gigi" and great-grandmother. She was a smart, funny, formidable lady, and will be sorely missed by all who knew and loved her. The family would like to thank the owners and staff at Kimberly's Cottage adult family home for the compassionate and wonderful care mom received in the past few years of her life.
There will be a celebration of life for both Alpha and Don on October 8th, at the Wandermere golf club at 1pm. Any and all are welcome to attend with stories or memories they would like to share about mom or dad.

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Published in Spokesman-Review from Sep. 24 to Sep. 27, 2017.
Celebration of Life
01:00 PM
Wandermere golf club
Memories & Condolences
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2 entries
September 27, 2017
Mr. and Mrs. Spence are among my favorite teachers from my time at Mead Jr. and Senior High Schools in the early 60's. Mr. Spence was my 8th grade science teacher and Mrs. Spence was my high school English teacher for several classes. I think I might be able to diagram a sentence even today. Mr. Spence told about commanding a tank in WWII and how humbling it had been to have been chased out of the tank and then have the enemy shoot at you from it. He was also a football coach and we knew he had played for Eastern at Cheney where he went to college on the GI Bill. Each had their own style and both were memorable people. I know I was really lucky to have such caring and knowledgeable people as teachers.
Scott Gibbs,
MHS 1965
September 27, 2017
Both Mr. and Mrs. Spence were favorite teachers of mine at Mead Schools. I particularly enjoyed reuniting with them years later when I delivered Meals on Wheels to them with my Dad. It was a nice way to show my appreciation and they hadn't changed one bit. Still wonderfully happy and devoted to each other.
My condolences to their family.
Janet "Pinki" Culbertson
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