In Loving Memory of Valerie LeRose Wakeley

Valerie LeRose Wakeley came into this world on December 14, 1950 in Marathon, Iowa. She graduated co-valedictorian of her ten student class. She attended Iowa State University graduating cum laude with a degree in Psychology. She moved to Sandpoint in 1976 where she met her beloved husband, Frank Wakeley. Her two children, Jesse Hart and Sean Austin, were both born at home in Sagle. She lived her life with compassion and wisdom of the natural order. She loved to garden, hike, explore nature, use herbs, cook and provide organic wholesome food for her family and loved ones. She had a strong aesthetic sense that lead her to collect beautiful domestic objects as well as art and antiques. Her home reflects the deep respect she held for the past as well as reverent placement of spiritual objects.

She was a fluid, graceful, strong and competitive athlete. She wouldn’t hesitate to take up any sport, usually mastering them quickly with an uncanny ease. Many may remember her on local women’s and co-ed softball teams and snowboarding or skiing on Schweitzer mountain. Men were often surprised at the capacities she had on the basketball court when she stepped in to join a pick-up game. She enjoyed sailing, kayaking, sprinting, hiking, and was always ready for an adventure.

She is described by most as a spirit who touches everyone she meets with a joyous, light-filled sincere interest that moves fluidly into inspirational conversation. This rare quality has developed into cherished friendships that touch the very soul of her friends and loved ones.

She was devoted to a high quality of life, with a strong belief in holistic medicine, natural foods, spiritual depth and joyousness. Her cancer lead her to a long path of honoring these beliefs. She died peacefully, at her home in the arms of her beloved partner of eight years, Paul Dukes, surrounded by some of her oldest and dearest girl friends and her family. Her spirit will be with many of us for eternity.