|Birth: ||Oct. 11, 1925|
|Death: ||May 11, 2012|
Barbara Woodward Ponti, age 86 of Zillah, and a long time Prosser resident, entered into rest on May 11, 2012 at Willow Springs Care in Yakima.
She was born on October 11, 1925 near Eugene, OR, to George and Minnie Woodward. She joined older siblings Russell, Ida May and Glenn and was followed by twins, Keith and Kenneth.
The family moved to the Yakima Valley and Barbara attended grade school at Walnut Grove and graduated from Prosser High School in 1943. Classmates at both places became friends that she valued and kept in touch with throughout the years.
Barbara was a member of the "Greatest Generation" as evidenced by her strong work ethic and her desire to accomplish what had to be done.
After graduation from PHS and still during the war years, she joined the workforce in Yakima and was employed in several medical offices in Yakima where she met and developed life-long friendships with a group of young women. Those friendships also lasted through the years and were of great joy to her.
Barbara married Harold Ponti, a PHS classmate and military veteran, on April 15, 1950 in Goldendale and they made their home in Prosser. He became the Farm Manager at the WSU Experiment Station, which is now the WSU Prosser Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center. The research faculty and their families were often military veterans and brand new PhD graduates and many came to Prosser from throughout the country. Barbara was able to assist helping new arrivals get settled and acquainted with others and those friendships have also been maintained and enjoyed through the years.
Her WSU employment and participation with the very early days of Dr. Walt Clore and George Carter's wine grape research program were of particular pride to her. She was honored at one time with the composition of an ode presented at a WSU function which was titled "Ode to Blue Foot Barb." She enjoyed the work and to see the current status of Washington's wine industry was a source of satisfaction to her.
Sons, Bob and Jeff were recipients of a full time mother who was a great cook and who presided over many birthday parties with the neighbor kids and friends.
With Harold's onset of illness and with two school aged boys, she reentered the workforce, took correspondence training and became a medical records transcriptionist. Harold and Barbara moved from Prosser to Pasco and she enjoyed her time working at Tri City Radiology.
Finally retired, Harold and Barbara moved to the Spokane Valley to be close to Jeff and Holly and their three daughters, Hattie, Casey and Jessica. Her sister, Ida May joined them during those years. Those times were fun for all and the girls remember picnics and lots of activities with their grandparents and Auntie May. The girls, who all have families now, have always kept in close touch with Barbara and were always a source of great pride to her.
Bob and Carol's son, Joe, was always a good source of bragging rights with her friends along with frequent reports of his accomplishments and activities whether they asked or not.
Barbara and Harold returned to Prosser and reconnected with classmates and friends and enjoyed many area road trips and gatherings. Their granddaughters recall visiting Prosser in the summers and staying for swim lessons, school clothes shopping, power lounging, and large quantities of ice cream. Barbara and Harold hosted many PHS 1943 class reunions through the years in addition to family reunions. All of those activities generated lots of laughter and great memories.
Barbara and her sister, Ida May, always had a close relationship and were often the organizers of the frequent large family reunions and were a formidable duo. One of the brothers was quoted as saying, "If one of them would lie, the other one was first to back her up!"
Harold passed away in 2005 and Barbara moved to Zillah to be close to Bob, Carol and Joe, and lived independently. She later moved to Sun Tower, a Yakima retirement facility, had her own apartment, and continued to make friends there.
Barbara will be missed by her family and friends.
She is survived by her sons, Bob and his wife, Carol of Zillah, WA and Jeff of Otis Orchards, WA; her grandchildren; and brother, Kenny of Goldendale. She also leaves behind many nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 11:00 AM on Friday, May 18, 2012 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Prosser. Concluding services and burial will follow at the Prosser Cemetery.
Prosser Funeral Home
1220 Sheridan Avenue
Prosser, WA USA 99350
Harold Paul Ponti (1925 - 2005)
Plot: Blk 59, Lot 23, Grave 6
Created by: lloker
Record added: May 16, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 90232831