Shirley Joan Yeary

July 20, 1937 ~ March 25, 2018 (age 80)
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Shirley Joan Yeary of Prosser passed away peacefully on Sunday, March 25, 2018.  Shirley was born July 20, 1937, to Edna Marie (Wakeland) and Arthur Menton Warwick at her grandmother’s home in New Rockford, N. Dakota.  In 1943, the family moved from their Fargo farm to Bothell, WA.  In 1950, they moved to Prosser where Shirley graduated with the Class of ’55.  On July 23, 1955, Shirley married Chester Lafayette Yeary at the Prosser Presbyterian Church.  The marriage was blessed with two daughters and a son.

Growing up the oldest of five children, Shirley learned what hard work was and what the rewards of hard work were – she had many farm chores as well as housework.  During her high school years she worked at Arends Bakery and later drove school bus from 1964-1981.  From 1981-1985, she owned and operated the Grape Leaf Restaurant in downtown Prosser.  On her first day of operation she hosted Prosser’s first Wine and Food Fair Winemakers’ Dinner.  In 1987, she began selling real estate.  She and Chester built and operated a 120-unit mini storage and flipped HUD homes.  She was very active in the community where she was a Girl Scout Leader, helped build and traveled with the floats when her daughters were on Prosser’s Royalty, team mom to her son’s baseball teams, served ten years as Prosser Harvest Festival Chairman, served as Thermal Imaging Camera Co-Chair, and was a recipient of the Mayor Herb Schmidt Citizen of the Month Award. 

First and foremost, she enjoyed her family, cooking/baking, sewing, traveling, bowling, camping, and many other hobbies.  She made all of the girls’ wardrobes as they grew up.  She was a lifelong member of the Lutheran Church.  One of her joys was hosting and attending her PHS Class of ’55 Reunions. 

Shirley is survived by her husband Chester of Prosser; children Joni (Bill) Penwell of Prosser, Tina (Gary) Murbach of Kennewick, and Rick Yeary of Prosser; Grandchildren Jeremy Penwell, Dustin (Lindsy) Penwell, Derick Yeary, Tamese Yeary, Jon (Mallory) Murbach, and Chris Murbach; great grandsons Daxon and Beaux Penwell; sisters Darlene (Dwight) Kenner and Patty (Bruce) Kautz and families; and many special cousins and honorary daughters.  Preceded in death by her parents and siblings Louise and Gary Warwick. 

Viewing and visitation will be held at the Grandview Smith Funeral Home on Thursday, March 29, 4-7 pm.  Graveside Service will be held Noon on Friday, March 30 at the East Prosser Cemetery followed by a Celebration of Life starting at 1 p.m., Bethel Church, 270 N. Gap Road, Prosser.  In lieu of flowers, those wishing to honor her memory may contribute to the Kadlec Parkinson’s Support Group, 1268 Lee Blvd., Richland, WA 99352 or left at the church. Those wishing to send a memory of Shirley may do so at Smith Funeral Home Grandview in care of arrangements.

We want to thank Chaplaincy Hospice of Tri-Cities and Smith Funeral Home for the special care provided to the family.

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