Viola May Banks, 79, of Toppenish passed away on June 5, 2009, at her home.

She was born Nov. 24, 1929 in Grayville, Ill. to Clarence and Nellie Call the second of 10 children.

She married Melvin Downs of Grayville.

She moved with her children to the Yakima Valley in 1955, where she met the love of her life, Wallace Banks. They married and settled in Toppenish in 1957.

She worked for Del Monte for more than 30 years and was known for being the "hardest working woman" anyone knew. She was also known for her kind and gentle nature, she always had a smile. She retired in 1990.

She enjoyed spending time at the ocean, fishing at Mar Don and hunting in the mountains with her family.

She is survived by her two sisters, Rosemary Dilger and Hope Call; two brothers, Ken and Paul Call; two daughters, Sandy (David) Gibson of Lincoln City, Ore. and Barb (Rodney) Kluever of Zillah; two sons, Mike (Barbara) Downs and Charlie (Beth) Downs, both of Zillah; seven grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; and one great-great grandchild; and her close companion "Trouble" her not-so-little Chihuahua.

She was preceded in death by her first husband, Melvin Downs; her second husband, Wallace Banks; her parents; three brothers, James, Charles and Ted Call; two sisters, Gertie Urling and Nikki Nightingale.

We would like to extend a special thank you to her brother, Ken for being there for mom the past several years to care for her and to keep her spirits up. We would also like to extend a special thank you to her granddaughter, Megan Kluever for taking time out of her teen years to spend with her grandmother every night.

A family memorial service will be held at a later date.

Friends can send condolences at

Colonial Funeral Home in Toppenish is in charge of arrangements.


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