Service-minded senior is honored

Lila Trammell is selected as Camas Days Royalty

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Lila Trammell, of Camas, creates cards for veterans at the Barnes nursing home and hospice center in Vancouver. She has been selected as Camas Days Senior Royalty. Trammell will celebrate her 95th birthday on July 12, one day before her coronation.

A woman who has lived in Camas for more than 80 years has been chosen to serve on the Camas Days Royal Court.

Lila Trammell, 94, was nominated by her niece Roxanne Jones, of Washougal.

“I was kind of shocked,” Trammell said.

She is a 1935 graduate of Camas High School who has worked at several locations, including the Camas paper mill.

During two summers in the 1960s, Trammell cooked for smoke jumpers in Cave Junction, Ore.

Ten years ago, she revisited with the forest firefighters.

“The [former]18 and 19-year-olds had grey hair and potbellies,” Trammell said. “It was a grand reunion.”

In the 1970s, she set up the kitchen for the Camas Outdoor School at Camp Melacoma.

Trammell has also provided in-home care.

“If it was moral and legal, I did it,” she said.

Trammell and her first husband Ernie Sanders had five children. They divorced after 19 years of marriage in 1955.

Two years later, Trammell married Don.

Trammell served on Camas City Council from 1971 to 1979. During that time, she was among the first residents of Camas to visit its Japanese Sister City Hosoe.

Some of the Japanese officials called her ‘ichiban,’ which means ‘number one.’ At that time, it was unheard of in Japan to have women involved in politics, Trammell explained.

She and Don traveled to Japan three times.

Trammell remembers being “mobbed” by Hosoe residents who wanted her autograph at a Cherry Blossom Festival.

In the 1990s, the Trammells organized games and crafts for children and cleaned restrooms as park hosts in Oregon and Washington. Don died in 2000.

Trammell has 15 grandchildren, 10 great grandchildren and three great-great grandchildren.

at Portland International Airport. She has also stood outside cemeteries during military funerals.

Trammell’s hobbies include growing Scottish thistle and blueberry bushes in her yard.

She is well known at the Barnes Nursing Home and Hospice Center, in Vancouver. Trammell and Christine Zorn, of Camas, deliver handmade cards to the veterans.

They have been doing so, for five years.

“The staff and the patients appreciate what we are doing,” Trammell said. “I walk out of there on ‘cloud 9’ because the patients give me more than I give to them. It’s a feeling that I can’t even describe.”

Each card is hand stamped with the logo of Veterans Who Care — a local organization Trammell sponsors.

As a volunteer for the Patriot Guard Riders, Trammell has held the flag to greet troops as they arrive