Nature 14

Spencer Wayne Viola

May 10, 1928 ~ May 15, 2023 (age 95) 95 Years Old


Spencer Wayne Viola, who last resided in Rio Rancho, NM, passed away on Monday, May 15, 2023 after suffering from a chronic illness. He celebrated his 95th birthday just 5 days prior to his passing.  Spencer was born on Thursday, May 10, 1928, to Evie Jeraldine and William Oakley Viola in Lecompte, Rapides Parish, Louisiana. As a youngster, his family moved to Port Arthur, TX, where Spencer spent his childhood. Spencer graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in 1946 and then chose to enlist in the United States Marine Corps. After he completed his military service, he studied Elementary Education at the University of Texas at Austin using the GI bill. Spencer graduated with a degree in Elementary Education and started his career by teaching the 5th grade at Tyrrell Elementary School in Port Arthur, TX. He later earned a master's degree in education from UT Austin and spent many years as the principal at Highland Park Elementary School and the Assistant Superintendent of Nederland Independent School District. Spencer married Shirley Sanders, with whom he had two children, Stephen and Alison. After he retired, Spencer moved to Albuquerque, NM and volunteered as "Grandpa" at Calinas del Norte Elementary School. The things most everyone will remember about Spencer was his love of children and his generous, kind nature. He loved to tell a good story and had many from which to choose.  Spencer was preceded in death by his mother Evie; father, Oakley ; granddaughter, Kristen Viola; and brother-in-law, Francis "Sing" Daigle. He is survived by his sister, Nalda Daigle; son, Stephen Viola (Karen); daughter, Alison Gibbons (Eric) and feline son, M'Cat.

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