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Virginia Blanche DoyleSeptember 24, 2017
A celebration of life will be held for Blanche Doyle, nee Short-Younker, at 2 p.m., Saturday, October 7 at the Plankhouse, 1050 Plank House road on the Coquille Indian Reservation in Coos Bay.
Blanche was born August 31, 1924 to Draper Watson Short and Nellie Sue Metcalf Short Younker in Coos Bay. She passed away September 24, 2017 at the home of her son, Terry, in Coos Bay with her family gathered beside her.
She and her older sister, Laura Belle Short Kroc, were raised in Charleston by their mother and stepfather, Frank Wyman Younker. She spent her younger school years with Grandmother Laura Hotchkiss Metcalf, while her parents were logging up South Slough. She attended Charleston Grade School and Marshfield High School.
Blanche met her husband, James A. Doyle, in Coos Bay, and married him in 1947 in Chehalis, Wash. She travelled the country with Jim, who was in the U.S. Coast Guard, living in Oregon, Washington, Alaska, New York, New Jersey and finally settling down in Juneau, Alaska, in 1964. She and Jim lived in Funter Bay, Alaska, first as caretakers of an old Alaska cannery, and then in their new home at the head of the Bay, for over 30 years before moving back to Juneau.
They returned to Coos Bay in 2004, where Blanche enjoyed being once again close to her family. Family was always the most important part of Blanche’s life and having her home filled with family members is what made her happy. A good bowler for many years, she was eventually forced to give it up. Wii bowling became her favorite game in her 80s and she out-bowled her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
She was a happy and caring woman who was loved by all who knew her. She gave each life she touched a special gift and will be greatly missed by all. She had a multitude of nicknames given to her through the years: Momma-san, Momma Mia, Dana, GranDana, Tia, Trauma Momma, and Mom. She loved them all.
When her daughter Wendy lost all her hair from chemo treatments, Blanche shaved her head in a show of solidarity. When Wendy’s siblings all got a tattoo to honor Wendy, Blanche and her brother, Tom got one too.
She left high school to care for her ill mother and was not able to graduate. She always regretted that, so at age 84 she studied, and studied, and at age 85, she earned and received her high school diploma. She always told her family that they could do whatever they wanted to do; all they had to do was work for it. And she practiced what she preached.
Blanche was game for anything exciting. She enjoyed riding up the Amazon River in a small boat, go-cart racing with her grandchildren, motorcycle riding with her children, catching a 300 pound halibut while fishing in a skiff, and riding the “Banana Boat” in Mexico. She drove the Alaska Highway with her daughters and played “chicken” against the ocean waves with her sons. At 86, she returned to visit Alaska and rode a float plane out to Funter Bay to visit. She made a grand entrance to her 87th birthday party on the back of her son’s motorcycle.
Blanche was of the Euclewa Clan and the oldest member of the Coquille Indian Tribe. She was the granddaughter of Laura and Ira Metcalf, great-granddaughter of Adulsa and Charles Hodgekiss, and great-great granddaughter of Gekka Gis-cu-ae and Kit-sun-gin-um.
She was preceded in death by her parents; sister, Laura Belle Short-Kroc; husband, James A. Doyle; daughter, Wendy Sue Matheny; brothers, Frank E. Younker and Robert I. Younker, and great-granddaughter, Gia Branting.
She is survived by her daughter, Laurabeth Barton; son, Paul “Rocky” Doyle (Jan); son, Terry Doyle (Bev); grandchildren, Lon Matheny (Lisa), Wynette Hanna (Zachary), Fauna Larkin (Dillon), Kitzen Branting (Jeni), Quila Doyle, Brendan Doyle, Katie Doyle, and Lynn Cox; great-grandchildren, Kaylee Matheny, Sarrah Matheny, Daniel Cox, Siena Hanna, Isabella Hanna, Jackson Hanna, Pel’el Branting, Atlua Branting, Addy Branting, Baelfire Branting and Makayla Doyle; sister, Elizabeth Scott and brother Tom Younker; nieces and nephews, Lisa Bohanan, Val Healy, Randy Scott, Shawn Scott, Brady Scott, Tom Younker, Chris Keenan, Julie Eldridge, Jason Younker, Shirod Younker and Jeranna Strasman; plus many great and great-great nieces and nephews, all of whom she loved.
The family suggests memorial contributions to the Susan B. Komen Fight for the Cure or a donation to the charity of their choice in lieu of flowers. All of Blanche’s friends and family are invited to her Celebration of Life, 2 p.m. at the Plankhouse on October 7, and reception following at 2668 Mexeye Loop, Coos Bay.
Arrangements are under the care of Coos Bay Chapel, 541-267-3131.
Friends and family are encouraged to sign the online guestbook at www.coosbayareafunerals.com