Juanita Lorene Priest, aged 74, died at her daughter’s home in Mesa, Arizona, on March 11, 2018.
Juanita was born in Harlan, Iowa, on August 19, 1943, to Kenneth Nels Juhl and Wanda Lorene (Hanks) Juhl. She graduated from Salinas High School in 1961, and married Melvin Priest in March of that year. Their son Allen was born in 1962.
Melvin and Juanita divorced, and Juanita married Dayton Holcomb August 8, 1964. Dayton and Juanita had three children together: Timothy, born in 1967; Douglas, born in 1968; and Lisa (Tilleman), born in 1970.
Juanita worked for many years in the medical field, as a hospital aide, a home health aide, and a hospice care worker, and she was a voracious reader and researcher of healthcare best practices, especially naturopathic and homeopathic remedies. She also had an extensive knowledge of classic and modern cars. However, Juanita’s true passion was for studying the Bible, and she treasured her membership in the Christian Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses, from the time of her dedication to that faith in 1973.
Dayton, Juanita, and their family lived many places and led interesting lives, but Dayton and Juanita’s marriage eventually ended in divorce. In 2003, Melvin and Juanita’s love rekindled. They were remarried on March 26, 2010, in Sutherlin, Oregon.
In 2017, Melvin and Juanita were both diagnosed with cancer, decided a change was in order, and moved to Tempe, Arizona. Unfortunately, upon their arrival, Melvin fell and broke his hip, complicating his treatment. Taking care of him taxed Juanita’s system, and after his death in January of 2018, her breast cancer spread quickly, leading to her death in March.
Juanita was preceded in death by her parents and her sister Cheryl. She is survived by her children, many grandchildren, and numerous great-grandchildren. Per her request, no formal services are planned. Those who loved her are encouraged to take some time during a happy outing of their own planning, to remember Juanita and consider her positive impact on their lives.
Juanita was privately cremated.