Luella Butts died Jan. 24, 2003, in Craig. She was 91.
Butts was born Aug. 18, 1911, to Ernest and Aluie Butts at the family homestead in the Danforth Hills. She was the third of four children. She attended school at the Saddle Mountain Schoolhouse, which was a three-mile walk from their home. She and her older brothers and younger sister carried their lunch and water to school in buckets.
Butts continued her education in Maybell through the tenth grade.
She married Earl LaBranch on Oct. 20, 1932, and to that union her only child, Marie, was born. The family lived in Maybell from 1937 to 1941 at which time they moved to Craig where Butts worked as a clerk in grocery stores for a time. Before that, she had cooked for ranches in the area. She helped her brother Jess when he ran the Meeker Hotel and she was a mail carrier for several years on the Jackrabbit Route north of Lay.
Butts loved good music and dancing. She was always happy to help care for others when she was needed.
In 1945, Butts went to work for Mountain Bell in the Craig office where she worked for 21 years before retiring in 1966. She was a member of The Telephone Pioneers.
After retirement, she moved to Denver to care for her grandson, Michael, while her daughter attended college. From Denver she came back to work at Juniper Hot Springs with her sister Stella Craig.
On Feb. 15, 1973, she married Hollis Hawkins. Their home was in Sunbeam. She continued working at Juniper Springs until 1990, when she moved back into Craig to live. In 1991, she and her sister purchased their home on Crest Drive, where she lived until her death.
Butts is survived by her daughter, Marie Solace; grandson, Michael (Crynn) Solace; great-grandchildren, Mathew, Marc and Morgan; sister, Stella, of Craig; niece, Della Ruth (Don) Smith; nephews, Francis Floyd (Sharon) Butts and Charles Butts; seven great nieces and nephews; several great-great nieces and nephews; and friends to numerous to mention.
She was preceded in death by her parents; brothers, Jess and Floyd Butts; son-in-law, Fred Solace; and great nephew, Donald Butts.
Services were Jan. 30, 2003, at Grant Mortuary Chapel with Mervin Johnson officiating. The organist was Elaine DeuPree and soloist was Wanda Brown. Selections were "Whispering Hope" and "Beyond the Sunset."
Pallbearers were Michael Solace, Charles Smith, David Reyher, Francis Butts, Gene "Butch" Nelson and Perry Baldwin.
Honorary pallbearers were all her many friends.
Interment was at Grant Mortuary.