Wilma Bullock

Obituary of Wilma Bullock

Wilma Gertrude Bullock, 98, passed away August 28, 2016 at Carla’s Cluster Care in Limon, Colorado. Wilma was born December 22, 1917 on the family farm north of Manvel, North Dakota to Otto E. and Ingeborg Hoverson. She was the fifth of six children. Her paternal grandparents, Andrew Hoverson and Gro Jane Peterson Quale, and her maternal grandparents, Ole Amundson and Gjertrude Torgesdal, emigrated from Norway to northeastern North Dakota. With a wood-burning cook stove, an outhouse, six children in three small rooms, and “riding in a one-horse open cutter to school in below zero weather,” life was not easy on the farm. Wilma loved playing basketball and was a first-string player earning a Letter in her senior year. She graduated from Manvel High School in 1935 and soon left the farm to be with her sister, Grace, in downtown Chicago, Illinois where she worked as a secretary at Osborn Brothers. While working, she attended business school to improve her typing and shorthand. She and her sister shared an apartment on the only floor designated for women at the YMCA. She met Mel Bullock at the YMCA social events and they married on September 1, 1940, in Manvel, ND. He was a safety engineer for the local bus company. While in Chicago, they would often go with friends to the Paragon Ballroom to enjoy Lawrence Welk and other big band names. Another opportunity as a Safety Engineer led to their transfer to St. Louis, Missouri. They eventually bought a home in Richmond Heights, a suburb of St. Louis. Mel traveled a great deal which left Wilma at home to be a homemaker and raise their two children, Roger and Linda. She did not learn to drive until 1949 so she often walked everywhere with their children or traveled on a bus. In later years, she worked as a legal secretary for lawyers in Clayton, Missouri. Mel would plan his annual two week vacation well in advance by mapping out their destination. He literally drew the route on an atlas. Over the years, they managed to see most of the United States and often in a station wagon so they could camp, if necessary. He was an avid ham radio operator so they often went to “hamventions.” Mel eventually became vice-president of the Safety Engineering Division of Transit Casualty Company. He passed away in August, 1967, and was posthumously recognized by the National Safety Council for his distinguished qualities of dynamic and effective leadership to the transit industry. Wilma remained in St. Louis until 1974 when she moved to Springfield, Missouri to be near Linda and her husband, Bob. They moved to Denver, CO in 1977 where she lived with them until purchasing a condo and working as a secretary for a large real estate developer. When she retired in 1985, she moved to Limon, Colorado to be with Linda and Bob and their children. She has resided at Carla’s Cluster Care in Limon since 2009. Wilma was a volunteer for the Red Cross during World War II, active in the Parent Teacher Association in Richmond Heights, loved to bowl and was on a league for many years. She had many travel experiences with Roger and never hesitated to fly with him in his airplanes. She wasn’t sure about staying in Limon after the tornado in 1990, but was glad she had a basement at the time. Her hobbies were knitting, crocheting and playing cards, but she loved to clean. Always cleaning something whether inside or out. And get this, she loved to iron. She loved to bake and would make Norwegian lefse at Christmas. When she and Mel moved to St. Louis in 1943, she wrote to her mother every week and her mother responded. Many letters were also exchanged with her sister, Grace. Wilma saved all those letters and in her retirement and as she developed macular degeneration and Alzheimer’s, it was her goal to put all those saved letters in notebooks which created a wonderful biographical history of her life for the next generations. Her favorite Norwegian saying when things got tough … Uffda! Wilma is survived by her son, Roger Bullock, her daughter, Linda Hawthorne (Bob), her grandson, Rob (Stephanie) and their children Jackson and Haven, her grandson Adam, cousins, and numerous nieces and nephews. Her husband and her parents predeceased her as well as her sister, Grace, and her brothers, Andrew, Olger, Walter, and Raymond.
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