Cleta M. Morrison

10/29/1929 — 11/08/2007

From Richland, WA, US | Born in Chandler, Oklahoma

Cleta M. Morrison

Cleta M. Morrison, age 78, passed away on November 8, 2007, from complications of Multiple Sclerosis MS. Cleta was the 4th child born to Edward Burt Manning and Artimica Dibbler Manning, on October 29, 1929, in Chandler, Oklahoma.

She grew up on a small farm outside of Chandler along with her brothers and sisters, Hazel Ashcraft, Edward Red Manning, Leaun Clifford Bud Manning, Vernon Hubert Manning and Dorothy Larine Tyler. She learned to work hard and play hard on the farm, making sorghum, riding horses, eating watermelon in the fields, and staying one step ahead of her playful brothers. Cleta attended Chandler High School and became active in sports, playing basketball, softball, as well as participating in track. She was never defeated in track, winning all first place medals as well as setting many local and state records. Cleta won the best senior girl athlete award and went on to set a track record for the State in the 100 yard dash. Her high school coach wanted Cleta to train for the Olympics. Having never heard of what the Olympics were, Cleta chose marriage, as most girls did in that era.

She married Billy Reed McDaniel in 1947. They had a son David Alan McDaniel, before moving to Richland, Washington in 1951, where Bill came out to work on the Hanford plant. Brenda Sue McDaniel Peach was born a few years later. Cleta became active in her church as Missionary President, and she taught Sunday school in the 50's while continuing raising her children. She continued her education at CBC and began working for GE and later at Battelle during the 60's. In her social life she was involved in Beta Sigma Phi, where she was a Queen candidate and she enjoyed modeling for Beta Sigma Phi in style shows, representing Gentries, Piro's, and Annie Z's.

In 1969 Cleta was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, which eventually forced her to retire from the Hanford site. She married Dewey P. White in 1970 and together they started a new life, where they enjoyed fishing, music, and card playing. With Dewey's passing about 10 years later Cleta's life was about to move forward in an inspiring manner. Challenged with disabilities from her MS and confined to a wheelchair, she mastered driving, using hand controls in her specially built ActiveVan, and living on her own while confined to her wheelchair.

She was active at Central United Protestant Church CUP, acting as a greeter and calling shut-in's. She received an inspirational award for her endeavors. She was a charter member of ''meet me at the Golden Croissant for lunch'', her favorite sandwich restaurant located in Uptown Richland. She became a handicap activist and petitioned the Uptown Shopping Center into putting in handicap curb cuts for wheel chairs. Cleta was elected as Treasure for the Garden Villa Condo's where she lived and she was the Program Chairman for the Columbia Basin Ostomy Association for 5 years.

Active in the CUP's Singles group, Cleta met Myrle Morrison. They were married in April 14, 1989 and enjoyed life as they cared for each other for almost 10 years until his death in 1998. After Myrle's death, Sharon Pitman came into Cleta's life as her caregiver, companion, and best friend, for the past nine plus years. Together they shopped, enjoyed movies, and traveled to Oklahoma twice, cruised to Alaska, made numerous visits to Seattle, where Cleta's grandchildren Brett, and Brian Peach live. She visited family and friends in Oregon as well. Her last visit was this month for a family get together at Seaside Oregon.

Although confined to her wheelchair, without much use of her arms, and afflicted with many other limitations from MS, Cleta never let life get her down nor complained about what life had given her. She enjoyed everyday, and still faced life with faith. Cleta was inspirational to all, never believing that she was limited or handicapped.

A memorial service and celebration of Cleta's life will be held at 2:00 PM, Saturday, November 17, 2007 at the Central United Protestant Church, 1124 Stevens Drive, Richland, WA, with a reception to follow. The family would ask that in lieu of flowers, please make remembrances to the Multiple Sclerosis Society, 192 Nickerson, Suite 100, Seattle, WA. 98109.

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Cleta M. Morrison

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  • I am truly blessed to know someone like Cleta. She is a wonderful person. I had the pleasure of knowing her my whole life. She is one of those people on Earth who truly cares for everyone. She always had a smile on her face and everytime I think of her, she makes me smile. I am glad that I had the opportunity for her to see both of my sons. They may be too small to remember her, but I am grateful that her wonderful personality touched them as well. She will be missed by a large part of our community. Thank you for sharing your smiles with me Cleta, you have made me a better person!

    Crystal Dunnum Fordham
    November 4, 2014
    West, Richland, WA, US
  • Cleta was a beautiful, dynamic, fun-loving, and caring woman, and she’ll be sorely missed by many, especially me. I can’t believe it’s been more than 30 years since Brenda and I started rooming together, and I met Cleta. She took me under her wing and treated me as one of the clan. I remember when she was crocheting an afghan. She kept asking me what colors to use and if the colors looked okay together. I assured her they did and watched this small piece of yarn blossom over several months into a beautiful Autumn-colored afghan. Then at Christmas, I opened the most precious Christmas gift. That afghan has survived 30 years of family life and and still feels good to snuggle up with while reading a good book. It must have that special Cleta stamp on it.

    One of those good books I snuggled up with under the afghan was Miles From Nowhere. It was a true story about a young couple from California who were in their late twenties and realizing that soon they would have to make some life-changing decisions, like settling down, starting a family, and buying a home. The couple embarked on a 23,000 mile global bicycle adventure. I told Cleta about the book, and she asked to borrow it. I completely forgot about it for several years. Years later when she returned it to me, I found this note:

    Ruth,

    Thank you for the book. I’ve had it so long I somehow feel like it’s part mine. I read it twice—take care of it—I may want to read it again in 5 years or so. Blessings, Cleta.

    I believe that had Cleta been able to take that exciting and challenging bike trip, we’d be reading about an adventure by Cleta Morrison. I found a special bond with Cleta through that book.

    Miles From Nowhere was written with humor and grace, the very traits that I’ll miss the most about Cleta. The book is a special keepsake that will always remind me of her.

    Ruth Zlatnik
    November 4, 2014
    Kennewick, WA, US
  • In rememberance of Cleta.

    I knew Cleta for at least 20 years. During that time, I saw her at least once a week as I did her hair.

    Cleta was the most inspirational person I have ever known. She was always “just fine” and was more concerned with how you were.

    She never had a bad thing to say about anyone or anything. She never complained about any of her medical problems.

    May God bless her. I know that He will love her as much as we do!!!

    Estella & Larry Lamm

    Estella & Larry Lamm
    November 4, 2014
    West, Richland, WA, US
  • I am truly blessed to know someone like Cleta. She is a wonderful person. I had the pleasure of knowing her my whole life. She is one of those people on Earth who truly cares for everyone. She always had a smile on her face and everytime I think of her, she makes me smile. I am glad that I had the opportunity for her to see both of my sons. They may be too small to remember her, but I am grateful that her wonderful personality touched them as well. She will be missed by a large part of our community. Thank you for sharing your smiles with me Cleta, you have made me a better person!

    Crystal Dunnum Fordham
    November 4, 2014
    West, Richland, WA, US
  • Cleta was a beautiful, dynamic, fun-loving, and caring woman, and she’ll be sorely missed by many, especially me. I can’t believe it’s been more than 30 years since Brenda and I started rooming together, and I met Cleta. She took me under her wing and treated me as one of the clan. I remember when she was crocheting an afghan. She kept asking me what colors to use and if the colors looked okay together. I assured her they did and watched this small piece of yarn blossom over several months into a beautiful Autumn-colored afghan. Then at Christmas, I opened the most precious Christmas gift. That afghan has survived 30 years of family life and and still feels good to snuggle up with while reading a good book. It must have that special Cleta stamp on it.

    One of those good books I snuggled up with under the afghan was Miles From Nowhere. It was a true story about a young couple from California who were in their late twenties and realizing that soon they would have to make some life-changing decisions, like settling down, starting a family, and buying a home. The couple embarked on a 23,000 mile global bicycle adventure. I told Cleta about the book, and she asked to borrow it. I completely forgot about it for several years. Years later when she returned it to me, I found this note:

    Ruth,

    Thank you for the book. I’ve had it so long I somehow feel like it’s part mine. I read it twice—take care of it—I may want to read it again in 5 years or so. Blessings, Cleta.

    I believe that had Cleta been able to take that exciting and challenging bike trip, we’d be reading about an adventure by Cleta Morrison. I found a special bond with Cleta through that book.

    Miles From Nowhere was written with humor and grace, the very traits that I’ll miss the most about Cleta. The book is a special keepsake that will always remind me of her.

    Ruth Zlatnik
    November 4, 2014
    Kennewick, WA, US
  • In rememberance of Cleta.

    I knew Cleta for at least 20 years. During that time, I saw her at least once a week as I did her hair.

    Cleta was the most inspirational person I have ever known. She was always “just fine” and was more concerned with how you were.

    She never had a bad thing to say about anyone or anything. She never complained about any of her medical problems.

    May God bless her. I know that He will love her as much as we do!!!

    Estella & Larry Lamm

    Estella & Larry Lamm
    November 4, 2014
    West, Richland, WA, US
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