Judith Lavonne (Wiggins) Potter was born May 25, 1940, in Kermit, TX, the oldest child and only daughter of Vaughn E. and Edna M. (Glendening) Wiggins. The family moved to McPherson when Judy was a young child and she attended McPherson schools, graduating from McPherson Senior High School in 1958. She continued her education at Central College, now Central Christian College of Kansas, receiving her AA degree in 1960.
On June 19, 1959, Judy married Larry E. Potter. The couple moved to Denver, CO in 1960 but soon returned to McPherson to raise their four children, Susan Lavonne, Sarah Diane, Bradley Charles, and Eric Vaughn. Judy and Larry recently celebrated 61 years of marriage.
Judy loved to read and told the story of making her mother think she was cleaning her room when she was only walking around the room while reading a book. Her love of reading was a benefit to her children, and she enjoyed reading to her grand- and great-grandchildren. Not surprisingly, according to McPherson Public Library, Judy was the longest continuous library card holder, having a continuously active card for 76 years. Judy’s love and compassion for animals was another driving force in her life, and she always had at least one cat around, in addition to various dogs, rabbits, chickens, etc. Judy enjoyed spending time outdoors gardening, mowing, and reading. She was an excellent cook and her fried chicken and scratch chocolate cake are legendary among her family. Judy had a beautiful alto singing voice, sang faithfully in various church groups for decades, in the McPherson Chorale, and in the Messiah for the Bethany College Oratorio Society for many years. She also encouraged her children in their musical pursuits and played the piano for numerous family sing-alongs. Judy retired from Dillon’s in 2002 after 25 years in various departments and was a volunteer at Save N Share for several years. Holidays were almost always at Grandma Judy’s house, and she worked hard to make them beautiful and special. She always had a loving servant’s heart toward her family.
At a young age, Judy became a believer in Jesus Christ and was a member of the McPherson Free Methodist Church, where she served faithfully in many capacities during her lifetime. Her faith was especially dear to her during four major cancer battles, the last of which took her physical life. She trusted in Christ alone for her salvation and rested on the promises found in Romans 8:28-30 and John 14:1-3. The last few years of her life proved to be a refining fire, but she was always ready to testify to God’s faithfulness and goodness. Her family cherishes this legacy most of all.
Judith Lavonne Wiggins Potter passed from this world into eternal life on Wednesday, February 24 at just after 3 p.m. at her home, attended by her daughter Sarah. She was predeceased by her parents, grandson Christopher Bradley Shepard, brother-in-law Richard Potter, and nephew Wes Black.
She is survived by her husband of 61 years, Larry E. Potter, of the home, children Susan Shepard (David), McPherson, Sarah Voth (Joel), Wenatchee, WA, Bradley Potter (Lisa), Omaha, NE, and Eric Potter, McPherson; grandchildren Adam Shepard (Emily), Dylan Shepard, Michael Voth (Margaret), Brian Voth (Christina), Katie Voth, Gregory Voth, Andrew Potter (Bailey), Lucas Potter (Laura), Benjamin Potter, Jacob Hughes (fiancée River Thompson), Brooklyn Hughes, and Tessa Naomi Potter; great-grandchildren Adeline, Charlotte and Evangeline Shepard, Isaac, Aaron, Levi, and Sophia Voth, Celia-Rose and Ira Potter, and one more great-granddaughter expected in the coming months. Judy also leaves a beloved brother, Charles Wiggins (Norane), of Springer, NM, sister-in-law Ruth Land (Jerry) of McPherson, numerous nieces and nephews, and other extended family members. She also leaves many friends who admired and respected her, and who will feel her loss keenly.
A memorial service for Judy will be held at McPherson Free Methodist Church, 1010 S Maple St., McPherson, on Saturday, March 6 at 10:00 a.m. Visitation will be at Stockham Family Funeral Home on Friday, March 5 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. with the family present. Interment will be at the McPherson cemetery following the memorial service.
The family suggests memorial gifts to McPherson County Humane Society, Save N Share, or the McPherson Public Library children’s department in care of Stockham Family Funeral Home, 205 North Chestnut, McPherson, KS 67460. Personal condolences may be sent to the family at www.stockhamfamily.com.