Neva Tinnerstet Blankenship

Neva Tinnerstet Blankenship, a long time resident of Montesano and the Wynooche Valley, passed away peacefully at 97 on May 17, 2012, in Olympia, Washington.

She was a lifelong member of the Wynooche Grange and the Montesano Church of God, serving as treasurer of the church for many years. She was born at home up the Wynooche Valley in 1914, and graduated from Montesano High School in 1932. She attended Washington State College, and was very proud of her many years as a 4-H member and leader, and of her trip to Washington, DC, representing the 4-H in 1934.

In 1938, she married her childhood sweetheart and across-the-road neighbor Ora Tinnerstet. She had 3 sons, and daughters-in-law who adored her, and also 6 grandchildren and numerous great-grandchildren.

During World War II she was a “Rosie the Riveter” at the Boeing airplane plant in Aberdeen. In 1953, she and Ora were given a Conservation Farmer of the Year award by Governor Langley for efforts on their dairy farm co-operated with his parents. She finished her working career at the Grays Harbor County Auditors Office.

Following Ora’s death in 1975, she married Rev. Alfred Blankenship, and together they started a new Church of God in Sequim, Wash. She enjoyed many years of retirement and traveling with him before he passed away in 1994. In August 2011, she was delighted to attend the 100th annual Simons-Taylor family picnic up the valley, something she had probably done 95 earlier times. She was preceded in death by her parents, Harry and Mary Simons; sister, Ruth Pevey; brother, Robert Simons; and son, Roger Tinnerstet. She is survived by sons, Alan (Gwen) Tinnerstet of Shelton and Darryl (Vicki) Tinnerstet of McCleary; granddaughter, Heather Tinnerstet of Seattle; grandsons, Jay & Jeff Tinnerstet of Shelton, Jon Tinnerstet of Lincoln, Neb., Darren Tinnerstet of Olympia, and Brent Cummings of Spokane; and many nieces, nephews, and great-grandchildren. Special recognition is given to her care providers, Nancy Queen of Hoquiam, Sherlie Barrett of Montesano, and Vicki Tinnerstet of McCleary; and also the wonderful and caring staff of Garden Courte Memory Care in Olympia.

A funeral service is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, May 26, 2012, at the Montesano Church of God, followed by a graveside service at the Wynooche Cemetery, and then a Celebration of Life reception back at the church. Memorial donations may be made to the Montesano Church of God.

Please visit and sign the online tribute to Neva at

Arrangements are entrusted to Whiteside Family Mortuary in Elma.