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Viola Pearl Brown

December 16, 1919 - February 10, 2014 <-

Born in Lisbon, North Dakota on 12-16-19, to her parents, Andrew and Helga Larsen. She had three sisters Sylvia, Edith, and Alice and two brothers Oliver and Jens, all who have preceded her in death

Pearl left home when she was 16 working in Fargo and Moorhead, as a grocery clerk and a nanny.

Saved up $24.00 and advertised in the newspaper to obtain a ride to Seattle for her friend, Leota, and herself.

Cigarette girl in her early 20’s but no, she never wore those short skirts.

Worked in Bremerton for Haskell Lumber where she met Emery Smith and later married. They had three children Larry, deceased, Phyllis, and Barbara.

Lived on a farm of 2 ½ acres off of 92nd and Waller Road, Tacoma, WA raising cattle, pigs, and chickens. Grew a variety of vegetables and fruits in the garden. Sold butter, eggs, and milk to the community.

Seamstress of clothes making dresses, coats, blouses, and pants for herself and her children. She even made a dress that was entered into a contest back east and won a first place trophy.

Cook and baker of homemade rocky road and walnut fudge, donuts, maple bars, sweet rolls/coffee cakes, chili, stew for Halloween, and chicken and noodles. Just a few of her many delicious creations.

Quite involved in PTA when kids were in school.

Could find her playing pinochle with friends at Parents Without Partners, Senior Centers, Merrill Gardens, Gibson Gardens and boy did she like to WIN!

Retail sales clerk at Sears in catalogue, garden, and paint departments. Also worked at Seymour’s Clothing Store.

Married Jim Brown and they built a home together off of 80th and Canyon Road, Tacoma, WA.

Nanny to Timmy and Anna Ceder. The children called her “Brown”.

Raised many lambs that paraded through her pasture. Some were even fed with a bottle by her.

Mom could just about jerry-rig anything and make it work. As it became more difficult for her to get down on her knees and work in the garden, she came up with her most unique invention. The “Electric Chair” as we called it. It was just a folding metal chair. She took four empty tin cans, made holes in the sides of them, and wired them onto the legs of the chair. This created a stable chair that would not sink down into the soft soil. She could move it along as she weeded and cultivated her plants. Quite innovative, huh?

Grew a variety of garden flowers, gladiolas, vegetables, and fruits. Sold them at Farmer’s Market in Puyallup and Telephone Company.

Her trailing clematis and Christmas cactus were some of her pride and joys.

Demo worker for Talk Northwest at a variety of grocery stores in the area.

Vacationed in Denmark, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Spain, and cruise to Alaska.

Passed away on 02-10-14 at St. Joseph Medical Center in Tacoma WA.

View obituary at
Edwards Memorial Center

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