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Obituary: Plese, Sundena “Sunnie”

PLESE, Sundena “Sunnie” (Age 96) Sunnie Plese passed away while sleeping peace- fully in the arms of her loving family, December 4, 2013.

She was a lifelong resident of Spokane Valley/ Liberty Lake where she made many lasting friendships and had a reputation for defending the truth and the underdog.

She was an icon in her community, known for her dynamic personality, integrity and business resourcefulness.

Born April 15, 1917, Sunnie was the only daughter of three children born to Vito and Annie Ferrante.

As a young lady, she worked on her family farm and business located at University and Sprague; there she learned the value of a dollar and the rigors of sweat equity.

Sunnie served her country during World War II when she worked as an aircraft inspector at Fairchild Air Force Base.

She married the love of her life, Antone “Tony” Plese, in 1944.

Their daughter, lovely Patricia “Patty” was born in 1946.

She and Tony worked diligently together owning and managing several businesses in the Spokane, including Happy Hour Pizza, the legendary Stockyards Inn, and the Hungry Farmer- a favorite on the Argonne Corridor.

She was a visionary and major business partner in the development of the University City shopping mall.

Her daughter, Patty opened a successful business there and together they spent countless hours nurturing friendships and customer loyalty.

Sunnie loved to entertain and regularly prepared delicious authentic Italian food and dessert for her family and friends at her home on Liberty Lake.

Never a Sunday went by when her enduring love for family and relentless work ethic were not poured out into her incredible 10 course Sunday family dinners.

The aroma in the neighborhood was legendary and in her generosity Sunnie would often invite the neighbors to join in.

Her neighbors adored her and her reputation was one of integrity, honesty, and extravagant generosity.

Legend has it she “adopted” a few neighbor families.

Sunnie is preceded in death by her husband, Tony; daughter, Patty; and brothers: Alex and Joe Ferrante.

She is survived by her son-in-law, John Hansen; granddaughters: Melissa (Skip) Meyer, and Chris Campanella; great-grandchildren: Jordan, Ciera, Lyndsey, Lauren, Joey; great-great-grandchild, Gabriel; and sister-in-law, Helen Plese.

She was a woman of rock-solid faith.

A survivor of two types of cancer and countless serious injuries, and enduring the loss of her closest loved ones, Sunnie drew courage through her Lord Jesus Christ.

She was an active member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Spokane Valley.

Join family and friends in remembering her.

A funeral service will be held on Wednesday, December 11, 2013, at 11 AM at St. Mary’s Catholic Church; 304 S. Adams Rd, Spokane Valley, WA.

Father Pat Kerst presiding.

A luncheon will follow.

Please visit Sunnie’s online memorial at, and leave a message of condolence.

Arrangements have been entrusted to:


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