Sally Sparks

April 10, 1937 - June 1, 2024
Sally was born in Brigham City, Utah, April 10, 1937, to Grant LeRoy Butler and Gladys Alberta Knutson Butler.
She started school in Brigham City but went to many different ones in her 12 years: Ogden, Utah; Ada, Mich.; back to Brigham City; Malta, Idaho; Torrington, Utah and Shoshoni, Wyo., finishing her last two years in Pavilion, Wyo.
After that she nannied for three years, working for Jean and Sonny Robinette and their three kids and then Robert and Jahala Ford and their three kids. Then she worked in the Dime Store, the grade school lunchroom and the police department. Nannying may have been more fun because she returned to watch over the three children of Roy and Margaret Peck.
She met the love of her life, Donald Lawrence Sparks, in Riverton, and after her parents helped them plot their elopement to Las Vegas, they were married Sept. 24, 1961. Both their children were born in Riverton: their daughter, Dona Calene (Sparks, Lynn) Becker and then four years later their son, Grant Lawrence Sparks, was born.
They moved to Otto where Don’s family lived, and Sally helped Don farm by driving tractors and beet trucks. When Grant turned 4 and started Head Start, Sally became a Head Start teacher. She also became the center supervisor for Head Start and was the head teacher.
They moved to Basin in 1975, but Don continued farming in Otto and Emblem. Later, while still farming, they purchased Sparks Auto Parts store in Greybull and Sally helped the secretary and made parts runs to Billings and Worland.
In the latter part of the ‘70s, Don became a partner in a heavy equipment construction business named Tri-Pac Construction. During that time, Sally started her own business, a ceramics shop which she operated out of their home in Basin. She taught classes, poured molds and sold greenware and supplies.
The couple divorced in 1981 and Sally went to work in the bakery in Wheeler’s IGA in Basin. She moved to Twin Falls, Idaho, in 1985 to be closer to her parents and managed a 27-unit apartment building while attending beauty school and attending CNA classes in the evening.
In 1990, Sally and her son, Grant, returned to Riverton and Sally worked at Fremont Manor. They lived in Powell from 1996-1998 and she worked in the nursing home there. Riverton always felt most like home though, so they moved back, where she worked for Central Wyoming Healthcare for two years and then Integra Care, which later became Frontier Home Health & Hospice. December 31, 2016, was her last day of working for others and a few months short of her 80th birthday, she struck out on her own and provided home care for a couple until July 2018. That’s when they moved back to Powell and lived with Dona for 8 months until an apartment became available at the Surrey.
Sally loved working on ceramics, puzzles, genealogy (she traced the Butler, Sparks, Ingalls and Lynn families), photography (until her last film camera went on the fritz in 2019, she had always had a camera in her hands), crafts and reading books.
They still lived at the Surrey when Sally died from complications of COPD on June 1, 2024.
She was preceded in death by Don Sparks; her brother, Eugene Butler; and her parents, Grant and Gladys Butler.
She is survived by her three children: an adopted son who lives somewhere in Wyoming, Dona (Bob) Becker (Powell), and Grant Sparks (Powell); brothers: Richard (Salt Lake City, Utah), and David (Debbie) Butler (Twin Falls, Idaho); five grandchildren; four great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Cremation will take place and the family will be gathering for a celebration of life later this summer. To leave condolences or a memory for the family please visit sally-sparks.