Nellie L. West, 92, former resident of Fort Scott, more recently of Kansas City, Mo., died Friday, April 27, 2012, at St. Luke's Medical Center on the Plaza in Kansas City. She was born Feb. 5, 1920, on the family farm near Kincaid, Kan., the youngest of 13 children born to George Russell Wiggans and Samantha Delph Wiggans. She married Elmer F. West on Nov. 4, 1955. He preceded her in death on June 29, 2007.
Nellie and her husband cared for 102 children over the 21 years they were foster care providers for the Missouri Department of Social Services. Nellie was often called upon to assist with the new foster parents' training as Nellie was known for "telling it like it is." She was a friend and counselor to all. She was as skilled and loving with plants as she was with children. The African violets on her windowsill were always in bloom.
Survivors include four sons, Kenneth D. West, Dennis D. West, Douglas D. West and Scott D. West, all of Kansas City, Mo.; four daughters, Charlotte Baxter, Nevada, Bonnie J. Page, Webb City, Mo., Crystal J. West and Mary L. West, both of Kansas City, Mo. Also surviving are 13 grandchildren; 13 great-grandchildren; and one great-great-grandchild. In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by her parents; a daughter, Mary E. Holden; grandson, Bobby Graves; granddaughter, Melody Suggs; six sisters, Goldie Cowan, Sylvia M. Harper, Edna Brooks Walsh, Ethel Ronella, Anna May Isbell Costello, and Dorothy Luttrel; and six brothers, Guy Wiggans, Marion Wiggans, Williams Wiggans, Grant Wiggans, Raymond Wiggans, and George Russell Wiggans.
Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m., Monday, in the W.D. Newcomer's Sons Floral Hills Chapel, 7000 Blue Ridge, Kansas City, Mo. Burial will be at 2:30 p.m., Tuesday, in the U.S. National Cemetery under the direction of Cheney Witt Chapel. The family will receive friends at the chapel from 1 p.m., Tuesday, until leaving for the cemetery. Memorials are suggested to the American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society, or the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City and may be sent to Cheney Witt Chapel, P.O. Box 347, Fort Scott.
Words of remembrance may be submitted to the online guestbook at cheneywitt.com.