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Wilda Mae Pierce

May 19, 1926 March 13, 2018
Wilda Mae Pierce
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Obituary for Wilda Mae Pierce

Wilda Morgan Pierce
May 19, 1926 – March 13, 2018

Wilda Morgan Pierce was born on May 19, 1926, in Grafton, West Virginia, to Herbert D. and Leona Ware Morgan. She grew up in Parkersburg, W.Va., the fourth of six children. All had nicknames; hers was Peachy Kid. 

Her father worked for the railroad as an engineer. She remembered him coming home from work in his striped overalls and cap, and how he would walk her around with him, her small feet on top of his shoes. 

Then came the Great Depression and jobs were scarce. The family survived on what her mother called “soup beans.” They didn’t have much, but they had each other – and a lively sense of humor. 
Peachy was a nickname that suited her personality and her outlook on life. She loved to write poetry and sew clothes. She was popular and pretty and smart. And now it can be told: She was the one who, as a joke, kicked the trash can down the stairs at the start of classes at Parkersburg High School. Everyone heard that metal can careening down the stairwell. She never got caught. 

It seemed likely that she would marry her tall, red-haired boyfriend. But he was the pilot of a B-24 Liberator bomber that went down over the Adriatic Sea on July 8, 1944, during World War II.

Peachy graduated from Parkersburg High School in 1944 and, applying her skills as a stenographer and typist, she went to work as a secretary. She married Robert Pierce, a WWII veteran, on June 8, 1947. While he attended law school and as he started his career, she worked by his side, helping him to achieve his dreams. Their three children, who pursued careers in education, law and journalism, were encouraged by her good example and loving support. She was always there for family and friends. 

As her grandchildren grew, she began to learn about new technology from them. When she was in her 60s, she attended Davenport College to study word processing, she made the dean’s list and spoke of starting a new career. Her love for her family and children ultimately brought her to Kalamazoo where she helped raise her grandchildren. In honor of her 90th birthday, a story poem she wrote for children was published as a book. She died at 4:45 p.m. on March 13, 2018.

She is survived by her children, Morgan (Marlene) Pierce of Leslie; Mark (Beth) Pierce of Milford; Rebecca Pierce (Scott Harmsen) of Kalamazoo; grandchildren Shannon (Matthew Pettit) of Carson City, Mich., Adam (Kate) of Novi, Jennifer (James Arnett) of Dansville, Eric of Los Angeles, Calif., Monica Harmsen of Kalamazoo, Benjamin Harmsen of Westland, Mich.; Jason (Kristin) Wolfe of Scottsdale, Ariz., Daniel (Ashley) Wolfe of Prescott, Ariz., and three great-grandchildren.

Her life will be celebrated at a graveside memorial service at Bluemont Cemetery in Grafton, W. Va.

Graveside services will take place at Bluemont Cemetery in Grafton, West Virginia on Saturday, March 17, 2018 at 1:00 PM.

Memorial contributions encouraged to the Greater Michigan Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

For further information, please phone Lynch & Sons, Milford, Michigan at 248.684.6645.


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