Wythia Willean West Hefner, of Poplar Bluff, passed away peacefully on February 5, 2021 at the age of 89 years.
Wythia was born on October 19, 1931 to Lester and Florence (Briggs) West, who preceded her in death. She graduated from Poplar Bluff High School in 1949. Wythia married the love of her life, Joe Hefner II on August 27, 1986 in Piggott, AR. Together, the two created what would later become Hefner Furniture and Appliance. He preceded her in death in 1999.
Wythia is survived by one son, Joseph "Slug" Hefner III of Poplar Bluff, as well as three granddaughters; Quaker, Fathom (Alex Riffle) and Marina Hefner. She is additionally survived by one sister, Marjorie Rushin along with her housekeeper and secretary of more than forty years, Carolyn Voss and Janet Cochran.
Wythia was one of eight children, having five brothers, Hershel (Ruth) West, John (Muriel) West, Joe (Jane) West, Ernest "Bub" (Dorothy "Dot") West, Marian (Mack) West, one sister Elizabeth (Willis) Ruser, precede her in death. Wythia was also preceded in death by a nephew, Joseph West, and two nieces, Brenda West and Gail West.
She is survived by nephews: John S. West, Jack (Teresa) Rushin, Richard (Debbie) Rushin, Willis (Nancy) Ruser, Richard (Linda) Ruser, James (Janice) West, Clayborn (Tammy) West, James (Jo) West, Justin West, John (Vanessa) West, Joel West, Alan West, Jeff West, and Greg (Angie) West. She is survived by nieces: Susan (Rick) Lamb, Cindy (Larry) Wells, Wendy (Alan) Jones, Cathy (Doug) Bierman, Maria (Roy) Sherfield, Cathy McCown, Myra (Tony) Knight and Linda (Mike) Anderson as well as several great nieces and nephews.
Wythia was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Poplar Bluff, MO. She was a member of the Area Chamber of Commerce and served on numerous community advisory boards and charity drives. In 1997, she and husband Joe made a commitment to improve the area surrounding their home. They purchased properties and cleared debris, pledging to enrich the area. Wythia continued the improvement and development projects through 2014.
Wythia enjoyed a successful career in the retail business. She was instrumental in the transition from Joe Hefner Mercantile in Qulin, MO to the expanded Joe Hefner Furniture in Poplar Bluff, MO. She was daily involved in the store business until she retired in 1987 from a forty-year career.
Wythia believed in kindness above all else. She had an outgoing, caring and loving personality, rarely meeting a stranger. She was a positive force for good, greeting everyone with a smile and ready to elevate someone at any moment. Her greatest joys were her granddaughters, family, friends and her beloved community.
***ALL SERVICES ARE CANCELLED.***
Wythia will be buried next to her husband, Joe Hefner, II at Memorial Gardens in Poplar Bluff.
In lieu of flowers, she and the family request donations be made to the First United Methodist Church, 500 N. Main St., Poplar Bluff, MO 63901.
Willow Ridge Funeral and Cremation Services is proud to serve the family and friends of Mrs. Hefner.
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