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Vivian Williams

A graveside service for Vivian Williams, 89, West Plains, Missouri, will be held at Clear Springs Cemetery near Dawt, Missouri at noon on June 18, 2022.

Vivian Ruth Williams passed away peacefully May 31, 2022 in West Plains, Missouri. She was born in Elijah, Missouri on April 3, 1933, attended Mount Olive Elementary School, and Bakersfield High School. She retired from the West Plains based, International Shoe Factory in 1993 after 33 years of rigorous work.

Vivian raised four children down the street from that shoe factory. Coworkers and neighbors recall her walking home during lunch breaks, knowing she was merely surveying the mischief that her four kids made in her absence.  Appearances meant a great deal to her, and during times of hardship she understood the value of looking your best. Ironing became one of her many passions, and her children never left the house without their clothes meticulously pressed (including their underwear). Vivian was dedicated to her children looking sharp at school because she knew their success depended on it. Whether it was her children’s clothes, the detailing of a car, the sparkle of a well-used stove, or a perfectly wrapped Christmas present, she was driven to make every aspect in life look immaculate. She did this exceptionally well, all while struggling to keep the lights on and food on everyone’s plate.  It was clear to everyone that Vivian never shied away from hard work. She was relentless, stubborn, efficient to a core, but above all caring. She put just as much energy into reorganizing someone’s sock drawer as she would mowing her own lawn (even at the age of 80). Yet all her hard work was always for the benefit of others, whether they realized it or not.  Throughout the town, Vivian was known for having a keen insight into to everyone’s well-being. The reason… because she cared enough to pay attention. When picking up the phone, she would be the first to say in her work-worn raspy voice, “How are you doin’ honey? Are you doin’ ok?” That was the honest voice of a person that spent her entire life putting others before herself, whether she realized it or not.  Vivian had an understated wit that was ever-present but always soft-spoken. She would often sit and listen to various conversations without saying a word. Then at the last moment, she would chime in with a sense of humor that was as dry as her over-cooked bacon.

When it came to animals, there’s no question she had a soft spot. Many say she loved animals more than people. That might be true. After all, you don’t need to iron clothes for animals (but if needed, she would’ve). So in lieu of flowers, the family asks you to donate to the West Plains Regional Animal Shelter by dropping and/or mailing your donation to Robertson-Drago Funeral Home, 211 West Main, West Plains, MO  65775.

Vivian was preceded in death by her husband, Curtis Williams, former husband, Ansel Evans, her parents, James M. and Mary Jane “Molly” Matney Hensley, two sisters, Pat Matthews and Pansy D’Arcy, one brother, Billie Hensley and one grandchild, Jamie Evans.

She is survived by her children, Steve Evans and wife, Keri, West Plains, Missouri, Cynthia (Evans) Thaier and husband, Larry, Fenton, Missouri, Jeffrey Williams, Springfield, Missouri and Jennifer Williams, West Plains, Missouri, along with numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, one great-great grandchild and several nieces and nephews.

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