Mamie Louise Pace Yellenn

June 14, 1925November 4, 2020

Mamie Louise (Lou) Yellenn, 95, of Phoenix, Arizona, passed away on November 4, 2020. She was born on Flag Day, 1925, to Albert Pace and Margaret Herring Wilkerson Pace, in Glendale, Arizona. Lou attended both Glendale and Prescott High Schools, graduating from the latter.

After high school, Lou worked as a dental assistant, as an office assistant at Hammond General Army Hospital, and for Goodyear Aerospace as a “Rosie the Riveter” during WWII. Because ladies’ hands were smaller than men’s, they allowed precise work to be done inside airplane wings during the production of aircraft, contributing to the intense war effort. Rationing formed her unending tendency to save all things, especially fabric. She had an entire room of fabric, sewing machines, and supplies. She was very skilled and made her young daughters’ costumes and clothes.

Lou spent most of her working career in Civil Service, on military bases, such as Litchfield Naval Air Facility and Luke Air Force Base, as well as the Goodyear Aerospace Plant. Her work included contributions to the Apollo 8 Mission. She was dedicated to the American way of life, and she and Bud built a successful business in Avondale in the 1970’s. Lou had a full life as the wife of an American Navy sailor. She was good at adapting, moving often for Bud’s orders.

Lou was an accomplished, self-taught seamstress and quilter, generously giving away quilts and clothing she made. She had a way of piecing things together, especially life itself. She loved camping, fishing, crafting, jigsaw puzzles, artifacts, cooking, gardening, and traveling, especially to Mexico, where they had a seaside cabin. They traveled the world together and with good friends. Then Bud and Lou built a forest cabin in Pinetop.

She was also a 50-year member of The Order of Eastern Star, local Acacia Chapter 46, in Avondale. Private interment was held on Veteran’s Day, 2020, a fitting salute for this All-American Girl.

Lou is survived by her two daughters, Cheryl Richardson, of Prescott, Jan (John) Byrd, of Phoenix, and grandson Eric L. Richardson of Tucson, Arizona. Lou is preceded in death by her husband of 58 years, Bernard (Bud) W. Yellenn, U.S.N.R, siblings Ralph Wilkerson, Lola Wilkerson Williams, Marie Wilkerson Morgan, and William Lee Pace, plus nieces and nephews.

Family extends a note of gratitude to the saintly Caregivers and Nurses of Paradise Living Center, Central Phoenix.

A Celebration and Reception will be held in Lou’s honor on Saturday, January 16, 2021, at 1:00 P.M., at West Resthaven Funeral Home; 6450 W. Northern Avenue, Glendale. At the service, masks will be appreciated. Family is requesting that everyone wear masks and socially distance, please.


  • Celebration of Life

    Saturday, January 16, 2021


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