Willa Mae Tapp (Meek) went to be with her lord and savior on October 23, 2019 after a brief, but hard fought battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. She was born to Gilbert and Ernestine Meek on March 4, 1940 in Hot Springs, Arkansas. When she was a young girl, her parents moved her and her 4 siblings to California and set down their roots.
At the age of 17, she met and fell in love with her "Honey", L.B. Tapp. In each other they found exactly what they needed, loyal and unconditional love. Only 6 weeks after they started dating, in a very small ceremony, they vowed to spend the rest of their lives together and were married on March 20, 1958. They started a family shortly after, with their daughter Barbara Jean born in 1959, followed 6 years later by their son Lorne Bert in 1965. Her children were her pride and joy. L.B. and Mae bought their first home in Visalia, California in 1964 and spent the next 49 years filling that small house with so much love and too many memories to count. She raised her 2 children in a godly home and eventually welcomed 4 granddaughters (Kristi, Shannon, Britney and Loren) and 2 great grandsons (Rylen and Jasper). Though they could often give her a run for her money, she loved each of them with all of her heart. Her most favorite place to be was with her family. She was a faithful servant of Christ for her entire life and an active member of the Church. She was always willing to give someone a ride to church or help out in any way that she could, without judgement and always with an open heart. She also taught Sunday School for 30 years, sharing her love for Jesus and teaching everyone to be kind to one another.
For work, Mae babysat countless children over the span of 30+ years, touching each one with her compassion, kindness and loving spirit. Everyone knew that their children would be treated like one of her own and she was lovingly referred to as "Aunt Mae". After she decided it was time to give up babysitting, she began her career as an in-home caregiver. She absolutely took pride in her ability to help out someone in need. She went above and beyond when it came to helping others and she formed a special bond with everyone she helped. She loved to share about her faith and was always there with a smile and a helpful heart. She managed to remain a caregiver until she finally retired at the age of 73. That's when she and L.B. decided to finally take the plunge and move to Corvallis, Montana in 2013.
With the help of family and friends, they were able to move into the house of their dreams. There they enjoyed the mountain views, a garden full of veggies, family dinners, lots of laughter and many pots of coffee, until L.B.'s passing in 2017. Although she missed him so very much, she still kept her faith in the Lord, knowing that a place was being prepared for her in Heaven. She knew the time would come when she would get to see him again someday. In the meantime, God had other plans for her and she began babysitting again. This time, it was caring for her great granddaughter Elsie Mae for close to 2 years.
While she would've loved to have stayed with us a little longer, she also said that the Lord needed her now and she had BIG things to do in Heaven. She was ready to decorate her mansion! She was also super excited to finally be able to eat a salad again, using fresh veggies from the garden that she was so sure Pop had planted for her in heaven! Even until the very end, she raised her hands in praise and thanked the Lord for all he had given her. Her unwavering faith never once faltered. Even though she is not here now, her love, teachings and kindness will flow through her family and everyone whose life was touched by her generosity and kindness. We'll see you again someday...get the mansion ready for us!
Mae was preceded in death by her parents, Gilbert and Ernestine Meek; her sister Bonnie; her brothers Harold Dean, Timmy; and the love of her life, L.B.She is survived by her loving family, including: Her brother Macky Meek; her children Barbara (Terry) Collins of Corvallis, Mt; and Bert Tapp of Corvallis, Mt. Her granddaughters, Kristi (Ryan) Craw of Missoula, Mt; Shannon (David) Calenberg and their daughter Elsie Mae (and soon-to-be baby boy) of Corvallis, Mt; Britney Tapp (Spencer) and her son Rylen of San Luis Obispo, Ca and Loren Tapp and her son Jasper of King City, Ca. She is also survived by numerous nieces, nephews and brother/sister in-laws, who loved her dearly.
She will be greatly missed, but will be forever held close in our hearts.
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