Judy Spinner - 1930 - 2019

Judith Ann Spinner passed away August 6, 2019, in McMinnville, Oregon, at the age of 89. Judy was born in 1930 in Los Angeles, the daughter of James and Ruby Flaherty. She joined an older sister, Toni. Judy remembered a happy childhood, playing outside by herself, fascinated by backyard creatures, including black widow spiders. She would carefully dry the peelings from her orange in a sunny spot to eat later. The family went occasionally to nearby beaches, and Judy couldn’t wait to get her feet in the water. Judy was especially close to her father, spending contented evenings listening to classical music with Toni and him. During the Depression, when times were tight, seven-year-old Judy was sent to San Francisco for a year to live with an aunt, uncle and cousin. It was a new adventure, but she missed her family.
After high school, Judy worked as a hostess at Van de Kamp's Restaurant, where she met Hal Spinner. They were married in 1958, and worked together in his real estate development business. In November 1965, they brought home their newly adopted two-month-old daughter, Eileen, in a Christmas stocking. Eileen survives her mother. They all loved animals and soon the family had a small menagerie of pets, including rabbits, chickens, birds and cats. Judy, Hal and Eileen moved to Yamhill, Oregon, in the early 1990s. Hal passed away in 2008.
One of the great joys of Judy’s life was volunteering at Legacy Hospice in McMinnville. Her visits brought a kind and compassionate presence to patients and their families. Judy very often found out what kind of music her hospice patients liked and then brought tape recordings for them. And she always brought flowers from her garden.
Judy’s garden was her refuge and greatest delight, especially these last few months. She spent many peaceful hours there, weeding, trimming, watching the birds and bees, and putting together her many, many stunning bouquets, which she lavished on friends, neighbors, the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of McMinnville (UUFM) and First Federal.
What a privilege it has been to share in Judy’s enthusiasm, humor, her generosity, her flowers, and her seemingly boundless devotion to UUFM. All of us who knew her were so lucky to have such a grand lady in our midst. Judy is a brilliant reminder of what community is all about. We will miss her mightily.
We offer a special thanks to Legacy Hospice for their loving care. A celebration of Judy’s life will be held from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Thursday, August 29, at her home. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Judy's memory to the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of McMinnville or Legacy Hospice.


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