Meri West

March 20, 2013 

Meri West, 62, died quietly, at home, with family at her side. The night before her death, Meri had held her sister’s hand and said, “It’s coming–not right now, but it’s close.” She had previously spoken with her family about dying, wondering what it would be like, but always stated that she was not afraid. Her greatest desire was to be reunited with her late soul mate and life partner Buddy. Her years with him were her heaven on earth. Of course, even before meeting Buddy, Meri lived a full and energetic life. She grew up in Beaufort and Harkers Island NC, then moved with her United Methodist minister parents to Dobbersville and Erwin NC.

After school and marriage, she managed a home and parented a son. She exhibited many talents–singing, playing piano, dancing, artwork, sewing, reading, writing, puzzle-solving, basketball, family and computer games, collecting Hummels–and worked several different jobs, including PECO Auto Financing, accounting for WKIX radio station, GE Financing, and Roger Wade Financing. In 1982 she became Assistant Director for the NC Office of the National Academy of Arts and Sciences, where she facilitated science fairs for advanced high school students, and was introduced to unusual adventures such as searching for the Loch Ness monster. As early as the 1970s, Meri had trained and worked at H & R Block and began doing tax returns for friends and family; she later studied at Wake Tech and started her own West Accounting and Tax Service business in 1992. She loved finding the largest possible refunds for her clients, while also sharing in their personal joys and woes. Many of her clients were with her for decades, and she regarded them as extended family. Her quiet approach and humor worked wonders for calming people’s anxieties. Besides her work, Meri also excelled in many social and recreational activities. In the 1970s she worked with the Raleigh NOW for passage of the ERA for women. She was a 700 Club bowler who played on several Raleigh-area leagues and helped govern the Women’s International Bowling Congress. She could also play 15+ bingo cards at one time, while helping her nearby companions from the corner of her eye. With Buddy, she became an avid NASCAR fan, attending many races, and the two of them loved boating, skiing, fishing and camping.

Now, her surviving family; son, James “Jay” Capps III and his wife, Diane of Zebulon, NC; mother, the Reverend Pearl Gooding West of Beaufort, NC; sister, Roberta “Bobbi” West of Atlanta GA; along with other relatives, in-laws, outlaws and friends, will remember her keen wit and her generous love. We will miss her always.

A parting earth ceremony, open to all, will be held at Montlawn Memorial Park in Raleigh (919-772-1073) on Sat., March 23, 2013, at 11:00 a.m.

Gifts of remembrance may be sent to Wake County Hospice, to the American Lung Association, or to any litigation against big tobacco companies.

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