Memorial service August 25 for Nancy Qualls, 1946-2017

Family and friends will gather on August 25 to pay tribute to Nancy A. Qualls, and are sharing this remembrance with the community:

NANCY ANN QUALLS, 5/30/1946 TO 7/17/2017

Nancy was born to Leolla and William Qualls at Providence Hospital in Seattle. Most of her life was spent in West Seattle. In high school she was involved in Spades, a volunteer program that assisted handicapped kids to go on outings. This experience drew her to become a special-education teacher. She attended Central Washington University in Ellensburg. While she was there, her father suffered a heart attack and she had to leave school to help support the family. Her time working at Kentucky Fried Chicken convinced her to return to college to finish her degree after his recovery.

She took a teaching position at Woodside Elementary in Burien, where she also lived. Teaching was something she loved, and she enjoyed the companionship of the others there. She met and married her husband during this time. He accepted a forestry position in Madras, OR, and Nancy commuted back and forth to Ellensburg to pursue her Masters degree. At the age of 28 on one of her trips, she had a horrible car accident that left her brain-injured and paralyzed on the right side. Her mother cared for her in Madras, and when her husband left her, she moved back to Seattle.

It was due to her strong and stubborn nature and incredible willpower that she recovered enough to walk again. Eventually she was able to live a mostly independent life with the help of her family and friends. As she aged, she needed to use a powered wheelchair to get around. She was busy going full speed ahead in her chair; taking the bus to the Junction, swimming at the YMCA, visiting Starbucks, Barnes and Noble Books, Easy Street Records, etc. She loved embroidery and drawing trees in the parks. She loved the ocean and became fascinated with Native American culture, particularly the Lakota.

After her mother died, she lived at The Kenney briefly, at Daystar Assisted Living, where she enjoyed going to Westwood Village, and lastly, Normandy Park Senior Housing. It was here she fell and broke her hip, had hip replacement, and was doing well in rehab. She took a turn for the worse and died at Highline Hospital the evening of July 17, 2017.

Join us on Friday, August 25, at 2:00 pm in the chapel at West Side Presbyterian Church, 3601 California Ave SW, for a memorial celebrating Nancy’s life.

(WSB publishes West Seattle obituaries by request, free of charge. Please e-mail the text, and a photo if available, to

3 Replies to "Memorial service August 25 for Nancy Qualls, 1946-2017"

  • Buttercup August 17, 2017 (10:22 am)

    She sounds like an amazing woman. My condolences to the family and you will be in my prayers!

  • BJG August 20, 2017 (9:32 am)

    Nancy was a friend. Her life was changed in an instant, and she was left to deal with a lifetime of physical challenges. She did so with grace and courage, always adapting, always keeping on. She was a hero. She will be missed.

  • Ann August 21, 2017 (7:29 am)

    I knew Nancy.  She was a real soldier.  After her tragic auto accident, she told me that she was in a coma.  While in the coma, she said that the Lord spoke to her and told her that she must go back and that she still had work to do.  And do it she did.  Nancy was a faithful believer in Jesus and lost no opportunity to share her experience  and the Good News of the Gospel with whoever she met.   She is now, I believe, in the Presence of her Lord.  Nancy was a really good person and one I will never forget.

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