Vesta Willson |

Vesta Willson

Vesta Avis Willson died Sept. 23 in Truckee, Calif. She was 95.

A celebration of life will be 1 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 9, at United Methodist Church, 10079 Church St., Truckee.

She was born Oct. 12, 1914, in Truckee to Mary Alice and James Sydney Mandeville and was the only daughter of six children.

Mrs. Willson lived a wonderful life on this earth, returning right back where she started, in Truckee.

She had many last names: Mandeville, Burt, Wold and Willson. She loved and out-lived all the husbands that shared their names, lives and hearts with her.

With Wade Burt, she had two sons, Dale and Glen Burt. Dale in turn gave her five grandchildren, Lori, Dave, Bill, Evon and Tom. They then gave her nine great-grandchildren, Ian, Jasmine, Aimee, Joanna, Michael, Alexandra, Nicholas, Nina and Hannah. Glenn gave his life in service in Vietnam.

Some of Mrs. Willson’s many accomplishments are that she was an honored surgical nurse and author of “Survival at Boiler Point,” her memoir of living with her family in Tahoe Vista, on Lake Tahoe, in the early 1900s.

Through all of her life, Mrs. Willson expressed happiness and the lessons her mother taught her of loving and accepting God in her life. Offering to pray for those whose spirit she saw downtrodden was a common occurrence, and even if they were not open to prayer, she shared her ready smile and hearty laugh with all and told them a joke instead.

Even through the tremendous struggle of her body, Mrs. Willson still found a way to smile with those who shared their love and energy with her to the very end.

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