Brenda Kaye Smith-Nelson, 63, passed away June 21, 2013, peacefully at her home in Washougal, Wash. She was born May 2, 1950 in Burns, Ore. to Jack and Betsy (Wood) Smith. The family moved to Medford, Ore.in 1952, and then moved to nearby Central Point, Ore. in 1958.
She attended Crater High School, and enjoyed being a cheerleader and a homecoming queen. During her first marriage, she lived in Orange County, Calif., where she raised her four children. After her divorce, she then moved to Beaverton, Ore. in December 1989. She met Tom Nelson in January of 1991, and they were married on July 11, 1992 in Washougal. Kaye worked at ESD 112 in Vancouver, Wash. for exactly 20 years. She retired in 2011, which allowed her time to travel, favor her hobbies, and to enjoy the last years of her life at home with her family.
Kaye was preceded in death by her father, Jack Smith, of Central Point, Ore. Kaye is survived by her husband of 21 years, Tom Nelson, of Washougal; her mother, Betsy Smith, of Washougal and formerly of Central Point; her mother-in-law, Joan Nelson, of Washougal; four children, Lori Latendresse (and fianc Scott Lishan), of Stevenson, Wash., Rene Kasma, of Pasco, Wash., Braden Latendresse (and wife Lynn), of Brush Prairie, Wash., and Jaci Humphrey (and husband Jason), of Ridgefield, Wash.; 11 grandchildren; and her 2 beloved Yorkies, Kopi and Pitea. In addition, Kaye is also survived by her very close Nelson family who all loved her and will miss her very much.
Kaye most enjoyed spending time with her family, pampering her dogs, shopping, family research, decorating her home, crafts, quilting and sewing, and traveling.
Kaye passed serenely in her sleep at her home in the early morning of June 21, 2013. Her passing was very much unexpected, but her last days were filled with family, happiness, and absolute joy. Kaye was a very loving and cherished wife, daughter, mother, grandmother, daughter-in-law, aunt, niece, cousin, and friend. She was very creative, caring, and incredibly thoughtful. She was adored by all who knew her and her presence will be forever missed.
A gathering in celebration of Kaye's life will occur from 1:00-5:00 p.m., Saturday, July 13, 2013 at her home. For those who would like to pay respects, please call (360) 835-0902 for the address.
In lieu of flowers, Kaye's family asks that donations be made to The Humane Society for Southwest Washington, 1100 NE 192nd Ave., Vancouver, WA 98684.