James â€śPonchoâ€ť Lee Day, a longtime resident of Chewelah, passed away on April 12, 2013 in Chewelah. Poncho was born in Chewelah on July 14, 1935 to James William and Sarah Elma (Lemon) Day.
Poncho was raised and attended school in the Chewelah area. He was very actively involved in the athletic program during his school years and graduated from Jenkins High School in 1954. At the age of 13 he got a job during the sumÂ¬mer working for Carl Walden as an extra hand on the farm.
On June 14, 1957 he married his high school sweetheart, Waneta Lorraine Gentis, and together they moved to Spokane. While living in Spokane, he spent several years as a Spokane City Meter Reader. He also was good with a wrench, working in the evenings for Snevaâ€™s Garage. He then decided to try his hand at driving truck and worked for the Northern Pacific/Burlington Northern Transportation Company until his move back to the Chewelah area. He continued trucking, hauling logs for Richmond Logging, until his retirement in the mid 90â€™s.
Poncho always had a great love for cars and was a part of Dukeâ€™s Car Club for several years where he worked on and drag raced cars. When his son Mike took up racing, he was always there helping with the cars. Poncho was also very meticulous with his lawn and kept everything very tidy.
With him being the fifth generation to live in Chewelah, he had many friends and touched the lives of everyone he met. Poncho was deeply loved by his family and friends and will be greatly missed.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Waneta and sister, Connie Bittick.
Poncho is survived by his daughter, Rhonda Millard and husband, Brian, Nine Mile Falls; sons, Jim Day and wife, Tonda, Nine Mile Falls; Mike Day and wife, Gina, Chewelah; nine grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
A memorial service for Poncho was held on April 22 at the Chewelah Civic Center.
Please visit the online memorial and sign the guestbook at www.danekasfuneralchapel.com.
Danekas Funeral Chapel & Crematory has been entrusted with the arrangements.