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07/26/1921 — 08/16/2023
From Richland, WA | Born in Springfield, MO
Juanita Avalon Robertson lived a full 102 years and passed on Wednesday, August 16, 2023. She was born on July 26, 1921, in Springfield, Missouri at home with the assistance of a midwife named Wanita, whom her parents named her after. Her parents were Harry Walter Robertson and Mary Matilda Cochran. They were married in 1919 and had two children: Edith Fern (born 1917) and Juanita Avalon.
Along with her mother, sister and baby brother, Juanita left Oklahoma, hitchhiked to Washington state and settled in the Yakima Valley. In 1939, Juanita married Roy Baldoz. The couple lived in Wapato, WA, and raised their four children on the family farm. Juanita was welcomed into the Filipino-American Community there that Roy had helped to establish and lead. The ladies loved her, as they did not drive, and she happily drove them around. She was also a board member/President of the Filipino-American Community of Yakima Valley
from 1952-1954 and was one of the last surviving members of the initial Ladies’ Auxiliary group.
Juanita was employed at Del Monte fruit packing company in Wapato for a few years. After leaving Wapato, she moved to Ontario, Oregon where she worked as a bus driver for the Ontario School District and also worked at Ore-Ida, potato processing company, both companies for several years. She relocated to West Richland, WA and enjoyed working the graveyard shift in the parts department for Lamb-Weston and eventually moved to Prosser, WA to be closer to her daughter, Mary, and Mary’s family.
Everyone who knew Juanita associates her with flowers and animals. She loved to take in numerous stray cats and tend her gardens. Her hearing was already failing decades ago, so she’d always have her television blaring, usually with cartoons. She loved all things John Wayne and to read things like “The Enquirer.” When asked, she liked claiming that coffee was the secret to living a long life.
Juanita lived to see a great many loved ones pass, including her parents, husband and two sons, Ronald Walter Baldoz and Stephan Douglas Baldoz. She also out-lived siblings: Fern McKie, Johnette Bonser, Jackie Bonser and Jim Bonser.
She is survived by her daughters, Delores Louise Devery of Portland, OR, Mary Renne Smith of Richland, WA, son, Richard Lynn Baldoz of Yakima, WA, 10 grandchildren, and 24
great-grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.