Ethel Wilhelmina Clay, 82, of Oxford, Pennsylvania, affectionately known as “Willie”, passed away on October 12, 2020 at The Seasons Hospice in Phoenixville, PA. She was the wife of the late Wallace Henry Clay (Wally) with whom she shared 52 years of marriage before he passed away in 2013. Willie was the daughter of the late Harry Paul and Ethel (Raven) Finley of Luckey, Ohio.
Willie graduated from Webster High school (along with her other five classmates) of Webster Township, Ohio in 1956 and attended Bowling Green University before being swept off her feet by Wally and working various jobs to put him through school. Willie was a devoted homemaker to five children for many years before returning to school and pursuing her dream of becoming a nurse. Willie worked as a Licensed Practical Nurse at the Pocopson Home for 20 plus years, retiring in 2003.
Willie and Wally loved the outdoors and designed and built their dream house in the woods in 1991. Willie was a talented seamstress who enjoyed creating her own clothes as well as her kids’ clothes; her kids were not always fans of these matching creations, however. Willie also enjoyed knitting and cross-stitching and loved crossword puzzles. Willie was a member of the Oxford Presbyterian Church.
A dog and cat enthusiast, Willie was very active in Chesapeake Bay Retriever rescue organizations. She raised and fostered many “Chessies” over the years as well as several Jack Russell Terriers. More recently, Willie loved watching over her many grandchildren and great grandchildren and visiting with friends.
Willie is survived by her five children: daughter, Kelli Boyd (Dale) of Oxford, PA; son, Kevin Clay of Coldwater, MS; son, Kyle Clay of Downingtown, PA; daughter, Kirstan Clay-Weinfeld (Henry) of Wilmington, DE; and son Jeffery Clay (Melanie) of Nottingham, PA; 14 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. She is also survived by her brother, Paul Finley (Elaine) of Washington and her sister, Karen Bauer (Fritz) of Ohio.
Willie was preceded in death by her beloved Wally, her parents Paul and Ethel Finley, and her brother, Jon Finley (Vickie) of Ohio.
A private memorial service for family will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Willie’s name may be made to the National Breast Cancer Foundation (via www.nationalbreastcancer.org) and/or Chesapeake Bay Retriever Relief and Rescue (via www.cbrrescue.org).
To view her online tribute and to share a memory with her family, please visit www.kuzoandfoulkfh.com
Arrangements by the Foulk Funeral Home of West Grove, West Grove, PA
Memorial ServiceA private memorial service for family will be held at a later date.
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