Elizabeth Eernisse Wall
May 19, 1919 – November 3, 2018
Elizabeth Eernisse Wall was born on May 19, 1919 to Alida Kate Harmeling Eernisse and James Guy Eernisse of Tacoma. The Harmeling and Eernisse families were part of the Dutch migration to the Puget Sound area at the beginning of the 20th century, and they helped homestead Vashon Island where Betty’s parents met and married. Her happy childhood included camping, hunting geoducks and hopping the mail boats on the Puget Sound. She graduated from Stadium H.S. (Tacoma) and attended University of Washington where she studied “home economics.” There she met and fell in love with Robert R. Wall of Bremerton, an engineering student who later would lead a team of engineers for General Electric that designed the first nuclear reactors to power Navy submarines. Betty worked as an office manager at GE and after retiring in 1980 she and Bob moved from Schenectady, N.Y. to Yakima where they opened a business, “Wall’s Wood and Gems.” Bob made handcrafted jewelry and together with Betty they worked the Arts & Crafts circuit throughout the Northwest selling Bob’s beautiful pieces of “worn art” to hundreds of people. Betty’s vibrant personality, boundless energy, and bookkeeping skills were indispensable in building their successful business.
Betty was a deeply committed Christian and an active member of many congregations throughout her life. She loved studying the Bible and volunteered with grace and skill as a teacher, a church leader, a soprano’s voice, and an office worker completing tasks her congregation needed done well at a moment’s notice. Her generous hospitality welcomed many guests into her home and her skilled and nimble fingers produced clothes and quilts for her family and friends. Later in life, after Bob’s passing in 2010, her wisdom mixed politeness with penetrating insight, often into her family’s history but also into books, shows, personalities, and the Bible, which came to define her role as family matriarch.
Betty was dearly loved by her grateful family, which includes three children and their spouses: Alida and Ted Palmatier of Yakima, Rob and Carla Wall of Seattle, and Kathy and Dan Russ of Denver; twelve grandchildren and their spouses: Ted and Jenet Palmatier of Yakima, Julie and Pablo Palmandez of Yakima, Peggy and Mac Camacho of Hawaii, Nate and Kristina Palmatier of Seattle; Zachary and Stephanie Wall of Seattle, Cara and Ben Scheffler of Seattle, Andrew and Suzanne Wall of Ogden, UT, and Ben Wall of Seattle; Libby and Sabri Ates of Dallas, Marie and Curtis Robbins of Denver, Will and Sherry Russ of Dallas, and Harry Russ of Dallas; and nineteen great grandchildren: Alura and Allison Palmatier; Guy and Grace Palmandez; Kate, Stephen, Izzy, Luke, and Josie Camacho; Suheyla and Rojda Ates; Paxton, Marion, Alida, and Theo Robbins; Daniel and Michael Russ; Aria Scheffler; and Wesley Wall. She was pre-deceased by her grandson, Bart Wall, and survived by her brother, James Eernisse of Des Moines.
The family suggests that memorials in honor of Betty and to a life well-lived be given to Ghormley Meadow Christian Camp, 640 Lost Lake Road, Naches, WA 98937, or to “The Bartholomew Wall Endowment,” School of Theology, Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, WA 98119.
“Yes indeed – God is my salvation. I trust, I won’t be afraid. God – yes God! – is my strength and song, and best of all, my salvation.” (Isaiah 12)
- In honor of Betty you may donate to Ghormley Meadow Christian Camp, 640 Lost Lake Road, Naches, WA 98937.
- You may also donate to “The Bartholomew Wall Endowment,” School of Theology, Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, WA 98119.