Obituary: Harney, Willa Beckmann

Age 91

HARNEY, Willa Beckmann (Age 91) Willa entered into rest on December 5th 2012 in Spokane Washington.

She was born in Spokane, Washington on October 21st, 1921 in her grandmother’s home.

Willa was the daughter of William and Alma Cable.

Her father and mother made their living and raised their family on a 60 acre farm just across the Idaho state line growing fruit and vegetables.

Like most rural families, everyone in the family had to work hard to make ends meet.

Willa loved to tell stories about her life on the farm.

One favorite story was about how every year, at the end of the growing season, her family would walk into the mountains, on Indian trails, to pick huckleberries.

Willa said the huckleberries they picked were the one cash crop her father and mother allowed them to keep.

Each year they would go into the mountains to pick and then sell the berries in Spokane to pay for their school clothes, school supplies and whatever else they fancied.

She attended school in a little white one room school house that sat on the Washington/Idaho state line.

Because there was no school available, after grade school, Willa enrolled in North Central High School.

Like many rural children of that day, she stayed in various homes and worked for her board and room.

She later went on to Kinman Business School.

During the WWII years, she worked as a clerk and supervisor out at Geiger Field.

At the end of the war Willa married her returning soldier and fiancĂŠ, Harold E Beckmann.

She then worked to help Harold through school at WSU in Pullman.

After Harold earned his degree in veterinary medicine, they moved back to Spokane and went to work with his father, Doctor Harold M. Beckmann at the Beckmann Animal Clinic on West Boone.

Willa was preceded in death by her first husband Harold Beckmann and their son Jerry and her second husband Ben Harney.

She is survived by two daughters, Barbara Beckmann and Linda Buck; and four grandchildren: Jason Votava, Jennifer Beckmann, Laurie Buck and Aaron Buck.

She was also grandmother to Brian Buck, Kristi DeVadder, Scott Buck and seven great-grandchildren.

She loved to work in her flower garden.

Willa enjoyed life and especially enjoyed time spent with her family.

She always went out of her way to make every occasion a special event.

Her love, compassion, and her adventurous spirit (not to mention her amazing cooking) will be greatly missed by us all.

We love you Willa.

The family would like to give special thanks to the staff at ‘The Little River Care Center’ owned by Rae Ann Scott.

Thank you, Becky and Natasha, for the love, the kindness and the excellent care you gave to Willa over the course of this past year.

We will be forever grateful to you both.

Memorial service will be held this coming spring, Willa’s favorite season of the year.


Online guestbook at

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