A longtime resident of Sunnyside, Wash. completed her earthly journey on February 24, 2021, at the age of 99. She was home surrounded by her loving family.
Evie was a devoted and loving wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, and friend. Her Christian faith guided her in all aspects of her life. Her family was the center of her life and now a legacy.
Evie was born and raised at the homestead in the Carnation Valley. She was the second oldest of five girls. She had an everlasting bond with her sisters, Clara, Donelda, Jeanette, and Lois. They grew up working hard on the family farm, milking cows, canning meats, vegetables and helping to provide for the family. There was also a little ‘horsing around.’
It was there in the country that she met and fell in love with a hard-working farm boy, John Brandsma. They married in 1938 and in 1944 they relocated to Sunnyside with their three young children. In 1946 they had their fourth child, John Jr., who completed their family.
She was a homemaker until 1957 when she went to work for GTE (General Telephone & Electronics). After 25 years, in 1982, she retired and was the last operator to flip the switch and close the door of GTE in the Yakima Valley for the last time, as the country moved into a different era. She was very proud of her time with the telephone company.
Evie and John loved to travel, they enjoyed their time on the AlCan Highway and many national parks in their RV. They went camping with friends and would attend family reunions every year. She enjoyed hosting gatherings, family events and holidays, anything that brought the family together. She was also the family historian, preserving memories of her loved ones by sharing stories from her life. Her memory served her well, until the day she passed.
Evie was the glue that bonded us together and will be deeply missed.
She is preceded in death by her loving husband John; her youngest son John Jr.; son in-law Raymond Bottineau, son in-law Melvin Mallonee; daughter in-law Judy Brandsma; and grandson Jonas Brandsma. She was the last of her generation.
She is survived by her children Lyda Zeller (Jack), Dolores “Suzie” Mallonee, Donald Brandsma (Dixie) and Sherry Brandsma wife of John Jr.; eleven grandchildren, Tammy Deery (Ken), Shelly Gaines (Tom), Elaine Jones (Gary), Jenee’ Bottineau (Matthew), Yvette Bottineau, Wendy Dalpiaz (Brett), Evelyn “Evie” Lewis (Bruce), Melissa Wilson (Jeff), Kristen Desmaris (Eric), Jeremy Brandsma (Audrey); and Nicholas Brandsma; twenty-three great grandchildren, thirty-four great-great-grandchildren; one great-great-great grandson; and many nieces and nephews that loved her dearly.
A celebration of life will be at 11 a.m. on March 12, 2021 at Valley Hills Funeral Home located at 531 S. 16th St. Sunnyside.
There will be a graveside service at Lower Valley Memorial Gardens following the Funeral.
The Brandsma Family invites everyone to return to Valley Hills for light refreshments after the cemetery service.
Special thanks go out to Lyda and all the family members who spent hours caring for mother during her journey.