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Obituaries: Heald; Meares; Wade

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Donna Jean Heald

Donna Jean Heald: 1945 – 2024

Donna Heald, 78, of Gillette, Wyoming, died Sunday, May 12, 2024. Memorial services will be at 2:00 p.m. Monday, May 20, 2024, at Church at the Barn, officiated by Nathan Adels, with refreshments and fellowship afterward.

Inurnment will follow at a later date.

Donna Jean Heald was born on December 14, 1945, in Lusk, Wyoming, to David and Jeanette (Lehman) Armstrong. Donna grew up in Lance Creek, Wyoming. In 1961, she and her family moved to Gillette. She graduated from Campbell County High School in 1964. Donna attended Casper College for two years before returning to Gillette. On September 5, 1967, she married Chuck Heald, and they made their home on the Heald Family Ranch, east of Weston, Wyoming. They were blessed with two children, Bobbi Jo and A.C.

Donna passed away on Sunday, May 12, 2024, at Willow Creek Assisted Living with her son, daughter-in-law, and beloved dog, Koda, by her side.

Donna was a bus driver for Campbell County School District and retired in 2015 after 39 years of service. She loved driving the rural route and loved all the kids who rode her bus over the years. If they had a good week, she would buy full-size candy bars to pass out on Fridays. She worked as a cashier at Wal-Mart between her morning and afternoon routes. She also enjoyed working summers at the Wyoming State Fair and Cheyenne Frontier Days for Black Diamond Security.

Donna enjoyed crafting, and one of the crafts she will be remembered for is the annual Christmas pins that she and Bobbi made for the staff at Rozet Elementary School. Donna also enjoyed sewing and could sew or mend anything. Above all, she loved to crochet. Over the years, she made afghans for the graduating students who rode her bus. She crocheted washcloths, doilies, crosses, lovies for babies, ducks that poop jellybeans, Christmas stockings, baby blankets, and birthday and wedding afghans. You name it, she could crochet it. She enjoyed going into town on Saturdays to “stitch and bitch” with her friends and co-workers.

Donna enjoyed baking, and some of her specialties were homemade bread, cinnamon rolls, lemon poppyseed bread, mincemeat cookies, oatmeal cookies, banana bars with cream cheese frosting, and moon pie, just to name a few.

Donna loved to “gab,” and no one was ever a stranger. She loved photographing sunrises and sunsets. Looking at the clouds to find shapes was something she carried over from childhood when she and her mother would do it together at nap time. During the winter, she loved putting puzzles together; the more pieces it had, the better she liked it. She enjoyed her fishing trips to the Big Horn Mountains with her friend Judy, and they would always cook their catch-of-the-day on a campfire before returning home. When she lived at Primrose Assisted Living, she loved riding her scooter and taking her dog, Koda, for long walks. More than once, due to a walk gone too long and a dead battery, she would need a push home. She loved spending time with her family and friends, especially her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Donna is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, A.C. and Amy Heald, Rozet, Wyoming; two grandchildren and their spouses, Ryan and Ashley Jackson and Staci and Dustin Cooper; and two great-grandchildren, Karter Baker and Kaysen Cooper, all from Gillette, Wyoming; her beloved dog, Koda; numerous cousins, nieces, and nephews; and sister, Debra Shaw, Gillette, Wyoming.

Donna is preceded in death by her husband of 30 years, Chuck; her daughter, Bobbi Jo; her parents; her twin brother, David Armstrong; her sister, Denise Schuster; her brother-in-law, Robert Heald; sister-in-law, Mary Leberknight; and nephews, Robbie and James Heald.


Patricia Meares

Patricia Meares: 1938 – 2024

In loving memory of the vibrant Patricia “Trish” Meares, known affectionately as YiaYia to her beloved grandchildren. Trish was born on November 16, 1938, in South Bend, Indiana, and peacefully passed away on May 14, 2024 at her home in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Trish was a woman of uncommon resilience and strength with an ebullient Irish temperament that brought laughter and amusement to whomever she met. Her passion for colorful behavior was matched only by her unconditional love and support, a caring nature, and steadfast optimism. Throughout her life, Patricia touched the lives of many as an homemaker and educational assistant at Johnson Junior High School in Cheyenne. Her love for her family and husband Steve shone brightly in everything she did. She found joy in simple pleasures like fishing at Curt Gowdy during summers, cheering for the ND Fighting Irish and the Broncos, planning outings and social event for her WW group, tending to her flowers, and delighting in her backyard hummingbirds sanctuary. Patricia’s enduring love for her family and friends shone brightly throughout the years. She never missed an opportunity to spend time with her grandchildren or celebrate special occasions with heartfelt gestures and warm bear hugs.

In addition to her indelible personality, Patricia was deeply devoted to her family that preceded her in death. She leaves behind a legacy of love and commitment that will continue to inspire all who knew her. Patricia’s beloved husband, Steve A. Meares; daughters, Theresa Ann O’Grady and Koreen Marie Meares; grandson, Nathan O’Grady; parents, Robert Emmett and Olive Veronica Cullinan; sisters: Cecilia Ann, Olive Rosalie, Margaret Mary (nee Cullinan); and first husband, Alvin Hal Pressnall, preceded her in death.

Patricia will be dearly missed by her surviving family members: sons: Mike D. Pressnall (Roine), Dennis H. Pressnall, Shawnacey A. Meares; sister, Madalyn Baer; grandchildren: Jason Presnall, Adrian Presnall, Brandon O’Grady, Michael Presnall (Mikey) and Emery Meares; great-grandchildren: Myleigh, Shawn-David, Quinn, Hadley and Griffin. She also has numerous nieces; nephews; cousins; as well as a community of friends, who were touched by her guidance, laughter, and friendship.

A visitation will be held on May 23 from 3:00 p.m. with Trisagion service beginning at 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. at Schrader, Aragon and Jacoby Funeral Home in Cheyenne. The funeral service will take place on May 24 at Saints Constantine & Helen Greek Orthodox Church from 1:00 to 2:30 p.m. as we gather to honor the beautiful life of Patricia. Reception/BBQ to follow at 219 E 4th Ave. Interment will be Tuesday, May 28, Cheyenne Memorial Gardens at 1:00 p.m.

Her presence brightened  and enriched our lives in ways beyond comparison.

If you would like please donate to the Paul Smith Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens in her name, Thank you.

May she rest in eternal peace with Steve and family in her garden above.

We love and miss you already!!


Wandalee Wade

Wandalee Wade: 1937 – 2024

On May 13, 2024, Wanda Wade departed our earthly realm to join Christ and her previously departed family and friends.

Born in the tiny agricultural town of Ovid, Colorado following the depression, Wanda’s family later moved to Denver, then Saratoga, Wyoming, and finally Cheyenne, which would become her permanent home at the side of her husband, Harry Wade.

Wanda, an only child, had a voracious appetite for learning, and from an early age her World Book Encyclopedias were her best friends. She was blessed with a keen artistic eye, and sought balance and beauty in everything she endeavored, from designing and sewing the matching outfits of her three young daughters; to her one-time Christmas Tree made out of flocked tumbleweeds gathered from the homestead property; to the 1/12 scale country doll house complete with furnishings, 25 years in the making; to the thousands of pages of genealogy and family history she researched and wrote; to the many, many perennial floral gardens she nurtured each year with her master gardener’s green thumb.

Even with her activities with the Wyoming Historical Society, the Cheyenne Botanical Gardens, St, Alban’s Episcopal Church in Windsor, Colorado, and her decades long employment in the Cheyenne banking industry, nothing was more important to her than her daughters and her grand-and-great-grandchildren, all of whom she loved deeply.

She was no stranger to loss, and she delivered many of her family members’ eulogies. Predeceasing Wanda were her mother, Verda Lindberg; her husband, Harry Wade; her step-brother, Bernie Lindberg; her daughters, Viki Ludtke and Teri Wade Craig; her granddaughter, Kalena Wade Craig; and her great-granddaughter twins, Lyla and Linnea Lampshire.

Wanda’s surviving family include her daughter, Vonnie Wade; with granddaughters, Lauren Elizabeth Nagel [Jimmy Volin] and Hillary Nagel Lampshire [Richard Lampshire] and her children: Jackson, Tyson, Hudson and Mahala; her granddaughter, Elea Presca Wade [Eric Schooley] and her children: Mattie, Jersey, Lexi, Amelia and Benjamin; and her grandson, Sean Ludtke [Sara Ludtke].

In lieu of a service, the family requests that on May 31, friends of Wanda and the Wade family perform a random act of kindness for someone unknown to them, and ask that they, in turn, pay it forward in some small way.


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