Wanda Marilyn Merical, 90, of Perry and formerly of Grand Junction, passed away Feb. 7 at the Perry Lutheran Home in Perry.
Wanda was the daughter of Enid Corrine Holmes and Edwin James Phillips and was born September 7, 1923 at Oswego, Kansas. She lived in Kansas until she was four years old and then moved to Earlham, where she attended Country School north of Earlham. Wanda married Albert Lee Saffell and in her words, “followed the Army” with him for four years, living mainly on Army bases in Texas. They were married for twenty-five years and then she later married Ralph Merical. Wanda was an independent, hardworking, strong woman of faith. She was the matriarch of her family but also never met a stranger. Her positive and selfless personality drew people towards her who needed her wisdom. When her children were young she worked as a waitress. After most of her children had graduated from High School, she settled into a career in health care. She worked in some nursing homes, supervised at Woodward State Hospital School and in 1973 took charge of the physical therapy department at the Madrid Lutheran Home which is now the Madrid Home. Wanda loved nature and enjoyed many productive hobbies. She was motivated to constantly improving her knowledge and skills. She enjoyed fishing, camping, gardening, painting, playing cards, crocheting and writing. Her passion though was in helping people.
Wanda is survived by three sons: Bob Saffell (Barb) of Jefferson, Ray Saffell (Kathy) and Don Saffell (Pat) of Des Moines; two daughters: Marilyn Adams (Darrell) of Earlham and Pat Pauley (Dick) of Jefferson; 11 grandchildren: Tracy Saffell (Tammy) of Jefferson, Jenny Kennedy (Andrew) of Cherokee, Lori Williams (Curt) of Morrison, IL, James Saffell (Beth) of Sterling, IL, Russ Saffell (Jen) of Ankeny, Kelly Axelrod (Alan) of New York, Kim Hoobler (Roy) of Enterprise, AL, Kailynn Gilbert (Chad) of Earlham, Tim Williams of Independence, Tracy Burgart (Mark) of Churdan and Troy Powers (Jenny) of Ames; 20 great-grandchildren; three great-great-grandchildren; sister Leona Miller (Don) of De Soto; many step children and step grandchildren as well as other relatives and friends.
She was preceded in death by her parents; husbands: Albert Saffell and Ralph Merical; infant daughter Linda Saffell; two grandchildren: Todd Saffell and Keith Algreen; a sister Betty Anderson; brother James Edwin Phillips; a special aunt Hazel Ruemler and special niece Dawn Mitchell.
Services for Wanda Marilyn Merical were held at 1 p.m. Feb. 12 at the First United Methodist Church in Grand Junction. Visitation and a lunch were two hours prior to the service. Pastor Steve Ransom of the First United Methodist Church provided words of comfort. Recorded music played was Holes in the Floor of Heaven and Softly and Tenderly. Interment was at the Wiscotta Cemetery in Redfield.
Honorary casket bearers were Tracy, Russ and James Saffell. Casketbearers were Cory Saffell, Justin Saffell, Matthew Burgart, Dylan Burgart, Devin Burgart and Joey Williams.
Memorials are suggested to the family and may be sent to Hastings Funeral Home in Perry.
Hastings Funeral Home in Perry assisted the family with arrangements, 515-465-4691, www.hastings.funeralplan2.com