Vela Dee ‘Dee’ Spencer, 85, completed her mortal journey November 9, 2021, at her home in Eagle, Idaho. Dee was born March 5, 1936, in Rupert, Idaho to Lorenzo and Selma Poulsen of Scandinavian decent. She was the youngest of six children: Cyril (died as an infant), Ezma, EuVada, Theone (KIA WWII), and Udell. All have preceded her in this life. Her growing up years were spent in Nyssa Oregon where her father found employment at the Amalgamated Sugar Company.
Dee had a natural talent for music. By age 12, she was an accomplished pianist and organist performing at Church Conferences, sought after to accompany dance recitals, and winning local talent contests outperforming others far more senior musicians.
Dee graduated from Nyssa High School Class of 1954. She was a bright student and quick learner. These were happy years as she enjoyed many activities, dances, ball games, and cheerleading. Her kind and loving nature outgoing personality were early earmarks of her life. She treated everyone with respect. Accordingly, she was very popular and admired by everyone that knew her, maintaining life-long friendships with her classmates.
Dee was self-motivated and developed a strong work ethic early in her life. This attribute is illustrated in how she mastered the piano and a foot operated organ by walking to the church building on her own to practice hour after hour. She was so accomplished by age 12 that she received a church calling as organist for the Nyssa Stake Conference attended by David O Mckay, who was at that time the Prophet and President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Dee earned money working in the fields hoeing weeds for $5 an acre, laboring all night harvesting lettuce, and culling potatoes. Later she qualified for advanced secretarial work with Thiokol Corporation, a national rocket test facility in Utah. She earned extra money doing odd job in retail sales and typing doctorial theses. She would later become secretary to the Mayor of Beaverton, Oregon. Eventually, she was employed as Office Manager for Cosmi Corporation, a Southern California computer software development company where she advanced to Vice President for Human Resources and Procurement. She retired from Cosmi at age 70!
Dee’s life was devoted to serving her family, church, close friends, and neighbors. She married early first to Steven Talbot. Out of that marriage were four children that brought her so much joy: Ricky, GayLyn, Shawna, and Mark. Later in life she married and was sealed to David Spencer in the Los Angeles LDS Temple. Along with that union were David’s three children: Melanie, Christine, and Clark. These were born of her heart if not of her body. She related to all seven with the same unbridled love, and now many grandchildren all of whom think they are her favorite. She was always active in supporting her children, grandchildren, and friends with school plays, ball games, concerts, and working to develop musical talents for many youths and adults.
Dee was a daughter of her Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. All her life, she was a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She fulfilled many church callings but was prominently involved in personal study of the scriptures, and the Church music programs. Her favorite calling was Ward Music Director. She faithfully carried out this calling off-and-on in several church Wards for at least 25 years, until the full measure of the last hours of her life.
Dee and her husband David were world travelers. Both had an interest in other cultures, history, and geography. Pole to pole and east to west their travels covered every continent and over 50 countries. Most favorite was traveling through Europe on tour with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
The corners of her life can be summarized in four areas: Family, Faith, Marriage, and Country. In these, she was a fierce advocate and defender.
Dee will be laid to rest until joining with her eternal husband David in the Idaho State Veterans Cemetery, Boise, Idaho.
She is survived by her husband of 26 years David Spencer, Eagle, Idaho; seven children Ricky (Wendy) Milwaukee, Oregon, GayLyn Talbot (Rene Pharisien), Thousand Oaks, California, Shawna Talbot-Ponto (Rob), San Clement, California, Mark Talbot, Walnut Creek, California, Melanie Wilson (Robert) Wildomar, California, Christine Wihongi (Shaun), St George, Utah, and Clark Spencer (Krista), Syracuse, Utah; 27 grandchildren, and 20.5 great grandchildren.
In leui of flowers donations may be made to https://www.stlukesonline.org/about-st-lukes/donate-or-volunteer/make-an-online-donation
A funeral servcie will be held, 11:00 am, Friday, November 19, 2021 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 6375 N. Royal Park Ave., Boise, with a public viewing beginning at 10:00 am. A committal servcie will be held, 11:00 am, Wednesday, November 24, 2021 at the Idaho State Veterans Cemetery, 10100 Horseshoe Bend Rd. Boise.
To attend the servcies virtually please visit https://zoom.us/j/93455533854
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Phyllis Bowles saysNovember 14, 2021 at 8:33 pm
Please accept my deepest condolences. I am praying for strength and comfort for you at this time
Jack Yurich saysNovember 16, 2021 at 10:19 am
I’m sad to learn of Dee’s passing. I’m so thankful that I had the opportunity to know her in this life and will see her again in the next.
Grace and Peace,
Susan and Roger Lovett saysNovember 16, 2021 at 1:24 pm
When you first met Dee, we were worried that you were worthy of such a wonderful person, but watching how happy you became together, we know she made the very best choice. I’m so grateful you found each other and then will go on being that happy for eternity. We are praying for you to be comforted as you endure this temporary separation. Sending hugs and prayers.
Whitney davenport saysNovember 17, 2021 at 8:32 am
Grandma Dee is the type of woman that I strive to be. She loved us so much, you could tell by the way she lived her life what was most important to her. I couldn’t ask for a better Grandma, and will miss visiting her, calling her to tell her our family updates and seeing her posts on Instagram of what she has been up to. Love you forever Grandma.
Alyssa McEweb saysNovember 18, 2021 at 11:04 am
Thank you grandpa for picking the best grandma for all of us! I can’t imagine or even remember my life before her and am so grateful to have such a loving and genuine person in my life. I have never heard her speak unkind about anyone and she has lived just to show love ! Love you both so much and all you have done for us from holidays to birthdays and fun family play days and having fun conversations!
Kathy Talbot saysNovember 18, 2021 at 1:15 pm
Dee, we will miss you and your beautiful smile, your time with us was so endearing, and we will remember you always. For you have melted a piece of our hearts when we were lined up by you and Steve in 1967. You are my sister-in-law, and I will love you forever.
Love, Kathy and Ralph Talbot