Viola E. Yochum, 79
Our dearly loved Viola went to be with her Lord and Savior on Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019. As her three years of peaks and valleys while battling cancer came to an end, she was able to remain comfortably at home.
Viola was born in May of 1940, in Lewiston, Idaho, to Isaac and Esther (Wright) Luce. Her family lived for a while in Bates, Ore., but at the start of her fourth grade school year, they moved to Myrtle, Idaho, on the Clearwater River.
At age 18, in February of 1959, Viola married her classmate and friend since fourth grade, Gregory Yochum, who attend the University of Idaho in Moscow. Viola had also attended the University of Idaho Beauty College in Lewiston and worked as a cosmetologist until five of their seven children were born. Viola and Greg’s three daughters: Teresa (Bradley) Sausser, Catherine (Jeffery) Stone and Susan (Mark) Taylor, were born while they lived in Idaho. In 1964 the family moved to Spokane, where two more sons were born: Michael (Susie) and Edwin (Paulette).
In 1970, Viola convinced Greg to move their family to the Deer Park, Wash. area to the country property of their dreams. It was there that they became ambitious farmers of alfalfa and cattle. The good Lord then blessed them with two more sons: Bradley (Kimberly) and David (Sara).
In addition to being a sweet-hearted mother of seven children, Viola was also a diligent homemaker who tended the family’s half-acre vegetable garden, sold cow milk and raspberries, drove the hay truck and managed the agricultural bookkeeping. As their young sons grew and gained skills advantageous to Greg in farm operations, Viola began a career cooking for the Deer Park School District and then Meals on Wheels. She moved on to Gonzaga University, where she cooked for the students on campus and later worked to prepare meals for the Jesuit priests at the Bea House. For a time, Viola and Greg owned a restaurant in Loon Lake, Wash., which they managed together. Through the years Greg managed commercial bakeries and farmed approximately 550 acres on various properties.
The couple joyfully became blessed grandparents to 20 grandchildren and more than 18 great-grandchildren, with whom they enjoyed many years of outdoor recreation and cheering on the Gonzaga men’s and women’s basketball teams. They are also blessed to be an aunt and uncle to a great number of nieces and nephews.
Viola and Greg were active and involved in St. Mary’s Presentation Catholic Church in Deer Park. Their fellow congregants became many of their closest friends and had a tremendous, blessed presence in their loving support of the couple.
Viola, with her sun-shiny heart and warm smiling spirit, has graced and enriched the lives of so many who will miss her with all their hearts. At last, Viola has finished her earthly race well and is presently realizing her proclaimed goal of spending eternity in the loving, glorious presence of her Lord Jesus Christ.
A vigil service for Viola will be held at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 13, 2019, at St. Mary’s Presentation Catholic Church, 602 E. Sixth St., Deer Park, Wash. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at the same location at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. To sign Viola’s online guest book, please visit www.lauerfuneral.com. Arrangements are by Lauer Funeral Home of Deer Park.