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Velma Jean Utt Abel


Born Velma Jean Utt on November 23, 1935, in Omak, Washington, to Floyd Lincoln and Eula Mae Bolin Utt, and passing after a brief illness at Coulee Medical Center, Sunday, August 13, 2017. Velma married Leroy Payne, having children Ronald, Donald, and Carla before divorce. Married Steven D Abel in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, on June 11, 1962, having children Anita and William.

Velma loved her family, traveling, ocean beaches, her toes in the sand, a good book, her critters, and her extended family of nieces, nephews, cousins, and her "other kids" she fed daily for 20 years as head cook for Almira School District. She loved photography, delving into the family tree and history, and cherished her travels with husband, Steven (Del), and had the opportunity to see most of the Western states by RV.

Velma was preceded in death by both parents, and grandson, Jason L. Hottell. She leaves behind husband, Steven D Abel, Almira, Washington; sisters: Shirley Groh, Odessa, Washington, and Donna Hersey, Omak; son, Ronald L Payne (Ellen), Ephrata, Washington; son, Donald F Payne, Wyoming; daughter, Carla J Payne, Ephrata; daughter, Anita L Etue (Hank), Fruitland, Washington; son, William M Abel, Almira; stepson, Steven D Neumann (Traci), Wenatchee, Washington; 10 grandchildren, 6 great-grandchildren, and scores of nieces, nephews, cousins, and friends who held her dear.

As per Velma's wishes, a brief graveside service will be held Saturday August 19, 2017, at 2 p.m. at the Almira Cemetery.

Please sign Velma's online register book at

Strate Funeral Home of Wilbur, Washington, is honored to be serving Velma's family.


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