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Velda Speight, 72

Velda Speight, age 72, of Porter, Minn., passed away on Sunday, July 11, 2009 at Sanford Canby Medical Center in Canby, Minn. after a lengthy battle with cancer.

Memorial service will be 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, July 14, 2009 at St. Peter's Catholic Church in Canby with Father Craig Timmerman as celebrant. Visitation will be from 5 to 7 p.m. on Monday, July 13, 2009 at Birk Funeral Home in Canby. Visitation will resume from 9 to 10:15 a.m. at the funeral home on the day of the service. Burial will follow at St. Peters Catholic Cemetery in Canby. For online condolences, please visit our web site at

Velda Joyce Speight was born November 27, 1936 in Scott City, Kan. to parents Franklin and Elma (Rose) Henney. She was an only child. She was united in marriage to Robert Charles Speight on June 8, 1963 in LaCrosse, Kan. To this union they were blessed with two daughters, Pam and Tonya.

For numerous years Velda worked side by side with her husband Robert in their business "Speight Tree Service." Earlier in Velda's life she was a waitress and she was the first female police officer in Great Bend, Kan. Her husband Robert passed away on March 17, 2008 after battling cancer.

Velda enjoyed collecting pigs and quarters and she fondly admired the color purple. She valued time spent with friends over a cup of coffee or a game of bingo but her true love was time spent with her family especially with her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Velda was involved in the March of Dimes, American Legion Auxiliary and the Yellow Medicine County Fair Board. She also volunteered her time for pre-school screening tests. Velda was a member of St. Peter's Catholic Church.

Grateful for having shared Velda's life are her two daughters, Pam (Lyndon) VanDeVeire of Canby, Tonya (Brandt) Wynalda of Chatsworth, Calif.; five grandchildren, Melisa (Jason) Lick, Jamey and Kari VanDeVeire, Grace and Gwen Wynalda; three great-grandchildren, Nathan and Jayden Lick and Ashlynn VanDeVeire.

She is preceded in death by her husband, Robert and her parents, Frank and Elma Henney.

Blessed be her memory.