Nov.19, 1914, to July 25, 2012.
Leatta Marie (Snodgrass) Wheaton passed away at the age of 97 on Wednesday, July 25, 2012, in Pagosa Springs, Colo. Marie was born Nov. 19, 1914, in Beaver Dam, Kentucky to George and Louella (Evans) Snodgrass. She was the youngest of seven children.
When she was 2, the family traveled by train and horse-drawn wagon to move to a farm near Boise City in the panhandle of Oklahoma. Her father grew wheat “as high as a man’s shoulder” and raised and trained horses to saddle or pull wagons. Marie learned to ride when she was 3. She rode her horse to school past the old buffalo wallow, herded cattle and helped her father with the horses. During her early childhood she learned to love the open country and skies of the Panhandle. She did not like a restricted view or to be confined.
When Marie was a teenager, the wind blew and carried dust until you couldn’t see. On Black Sunday, in May 1934, the dust started to roll along the ground and into the air, forming black clouds until it was as dark as night. After a few years of these conditions, the family moved to Arkansas to escape the effects of the dust on her mother’s health. As they left Boise City, Marie drove the tractor over the five-foot high fence that was buried in dirt from the dust storms.
In Arkansas, Marie met Floyd Meigs Wheaton. They married in Canon City, Colo., in October of 1936. A week later, they moved to Bell, Calif., where daughters Joyce and Phyllis were born.
In 1951, the Wheaton family moved to Boise, Idaho, where Meigs and Marie remained until they retired in the 1970s. Marie had worked as a secretary and office manager. In later years, they lived near Placerville, Calif., and in Albany, Ore. After Meigs died in 1996, Marie returned to Boise, and then moved to Pagosa Springs in 1998 to be near her daughter, Phyllis. Marie enjoyed camping and traveling in their RV, reading, crafts, painting, photography, fishing and hunting. She loved her dogs.
The deterioration of her vision over the past 20 years was very challenging for this independent, determined and active woman. She remained sharp-witted throughout her life and was known at Pine Ridge for her surprising one-liners.
Marie was preceded in death by her parents and siblings, husband Floyd Meigs Wheaton, daughter Joycea (Joyce) Leah Yeagle, and grandson Derik Aanes.
She is survived by daughter Phyllis Wheaton, Pagosa Springs; grandchildren Craig (Linda) Aanes, Albany, Ore., Jill (R.J.) Prince, Placerville, Calif., David (Jennifer) Wong and Tracy Wong, Sonora, Calif., and six great-grandchildren. Vernon Christie was a dedicated friend and regular visitor.
Marie enjoyed visiting with anyone who might stop and say“hello.” Thank you to all of you who did. Thank you to the caring staff at Pine Ridge Extended Care.
Marie thought she would live as long as she kept walking. She did. She will now rest, next to her husband, at Cloverdale Memorial Park in Boise, Idaho. There will be no services.
In lieu of flowers, consider making a memorial donation to the Friends of the Colorado Talking Book Library at www.friendsofctbl.org/ or remember Marie by simply taking a moment to say “hello” to someone who is somehow co