Wilma Irene Rich, daughter of the late Ray and Anna (Quillen) Bally, was born on March 30, 1923 in Andover, Kansas, and departed this life on Wednesday, July 17, 2013, at Landmark Villa in Cabool, Missouri, at 90 years of age.
Wilma grew up with three brothers in Andover, Kansas. After graduating from high school, she attended a business college and then worked as a secretary at Santa Fe Railroad. She also helped her aunt by working in her café, and became friends with a waitress there, Eunice Rich. She agreed to write to Eunice’s brother, Charley Clinton Rich, who was in the service. After months of letters, and some visits, she traveled to Richmond, Virginia, to see him. They were married on June 11, 1945. Seven children were born to this union.
After Clinton was discharged from the United States Army, they made their home on a farm south of Mountain Grove, Missouri, where they raised their family. They attended Pleasant Home Church for many years. Wilma was saved during a revival and served the Lord throughout her life. In their later years, they moved to Mtn. Grove and attended First Free Will Baptist Church. Mr. Rich passed away on September 14, 1990.
Wilma loved gardening, raising flowers, crossword puzzles, and doing crafts. She also loved to read, and when she could no longer see to read, she listened to countless books on tape. Her greatest love was her family. She was always proud to talk about her daughters, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
She was a loving and caring wife, mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, friend, and neighbor.
Besides her parents and her husband, she was preceded in death by two sons, David Lee, who died at birth, and Charles Ray, who was killed in the Vietnam War in 1967. She was also preceded by three brothers.
In her last years, she lived at Landmark Villa in Cabool, where she made many friends among the staff and residents.
Wilma is survived by five daughters, Linda Moore and husband Ron of Florence, South Carolina, Joan Frazier and husband Erwin of Greenville, South Carolina, Carol Sanders and husband Tommy of Franklin, Tennessee, Dottie Halfaker and husband Dale of Nixa, Missouri, and Susan Sigman and husband Barry of Cabool; twelve grandchildren, Andy, Corey, Ben, Carey, Jen, Lauren, Kayla, Michael, Sara, Susanne, Austin, and Zachary; ten great-grandchildren, Nathan, Sierra, Jordan, Derek, McKenna, Jayden, Aiden, Michael, Jazlyn, and Ian.
She will be fondly remembered and greatly missed by those who knew and loved her.
Funeral services were held on Saturday, July 20, 2013, at 10:00 a.m. in Craig-Hurtt Chapel with Rev. Jerry Pinkerton officiating. Sisterhood served as singers. Song selections were “Go Rest High On That Mountain,” “Because He Lives,” and “There’s Just Something About That Name.” Pallbearers were Austin Halfaker, Ross Hannah, James Harvey, Cal Morton, Alan Archer, Cory Sigman, Carey Sigman, and Zachary Sigman. Burial was in Penner Cemetery under the direction of Craig-Hurtt Funeral Home, Mtn. Grove, Missouri.