JOPLIN — Norma Lee Spear, 82, of Joplin died on Sunday, July 18, 2010, at St. John’s Regional Medical Center.
She was born Feb. 6, 1928, in Erie to Charlie and Lucille (George) Malson. She graduated from Bartlesville High School, Bartlesville, Okla., and then from Mercy Hospital School of Nursing in Parsons in 1947.
She commuted from Riverton to Joplin, where she worked for Freeman Hospital during the 1950s. She moved to Joplin in 1958 and went to work for Dr. Kuhn, where she worked for many years. She was administrator of Beverly Nursing Home for several years before retiring and moving to her beloved Grand Lake in the early 1980s. She moved back to Joplin in the 1990s to be closer to her family, especially her grandchildren. She was an avid boater and loved to fish. Many of her grandchildren referred to her as Grandma Boat. She took her last fishing trip to Roaring River when she was 81.
In addition to her parents, Norma was preceded in death by her husband, William A. Spear, on Sept. 3, 2000.
Survivors include her children, Hollis Spear and his wife, Patricia, of Owasso, Okla., Gary Spear and his wife, Trudy, of Webb City, Mo., and Loretta Morris and her husband, George, of Carl Junction, Mo.; grandchildren, Debbie Sekel of Owasso, Okla., Alicia Humes and her husband, Brad, of Lamar, Mo., Cary Spear and his wife, Debbie, of Carthage, Mo., Brad Spear and his wife, Jessica, of Tulsa, Lee Ann Cooper and her husband, Shaun, of Carl Junction, Mo., George Morris III and his wife, Joy, of San Diego, Nichole Spear of Owasso, Kara Spear of Owasso, Heidi Marbut of Webb City and Kathy Marbut of Sachse, Texas; 26 great-grandchildren; her brothers, Victor Malson, Vincent Malson and Charles Malson; a sister, Virginia Schnichels; and several nieces and nephews.
The service was Wednesday at Parker Mortuary Chapel in Joplin with the Rev. Bob Easton officiating. Burial was at Memorial Lawn Cemetery, Parsons.