Alice Wirkkala

NASELLE — Alice E. Wirkkala, 93, a life-long resident of Naselle, passed peacefully in Long Beach on March 4, 2021. The daughter of Charles and Helen (Carlson) Matta, she was born March 25, 1927 in Deep River, Washington. Her childhood years were in Deep River where she had wonderful memories of family, playing basketball and swimming.

Alice graduated from Naselle High School in 1945. Early on in her life she learned the value of hard work, determination, and one of her classmates Burton, founded a wood working business. Childhood friends remained friends for life.

On Oct. 19, 1950, she married Arthur R. Wirkkala in Longview. She became a wife, homemaker, mother and dedicated her life to family. She worked for over 20 years as office manager for the Appelo Insurance Agency, and over 10 years as clerk at the Deep River Post Office.

Alice enjoyed her home, yard work, playing bingo with her husband and friends. Though she didn’t play the game, she enjoyed time on the golf course with her husband and son, always making sure they had an ample supply of golf balls.

Alice was kind, generous to a fault, and never hesitated to help a friend in need. She was proud of her Finnish heritage, and her independence. When the years finally caught up with her, she moved to Circle of Life family group home in Long Beach.

At Circle of Life she was treated with love and kindness and she enjoyed the camaraderie and friendship of staff and residents alike. Besides playing games with others there, she enjoyed watching Dr. Phil and Lawrence Welk of TV, listening to gospel music and “modern” music of the 60s and 70s, and greatly enjoyed the companionship of the pets at Circle of Life. She was the “official taster” of owner Andrea Noonan’s numerous culinary meals and desserts.

Alice lived a long and happy life, one sustained by her faith in God. She was preceded in death by her husband Arthur; parents Charles and Helen Matta; brothers Herbert, Arthur and Ben Matta; and sister Mary (Matta) Hickson. She is survived by her son Bruce of Indianapolis; grandchildren Bryan, Daniel, Allyse and Philip; great-grandchildren Ashley Curry, Rylee Wirkkala, Kaelin Wirkkala, Jackson Wirkkala and Alyxander Bryant. Numerous nieces and nephews also survive.

A joint celebration of life for both Alice and Arthur Wirkkala will be held this summer in Naselle. Memorials are suggested to either the Naselle Fire Department or the South Pacific County Humane Society. Arrangements by Penttila’s Chapel, Long Beach.

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Elizabeth A Johansen

Alice was a great friend to my Aunt and Uncle, then became friends with myself and Mark. I will always remember your truly wonderful laugh and your big heart, and a great neighbor.

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