Cover photo for Wilma Mae Kmetko's Obituary
Wilma Mae Kmetko Profile Photo

Wilma Mae Kmetko

August 3, 1923 — May 30, 2023

Carlsbad

Wilma Mae Kmetko

Wilma Mae Kmetko, 99, passed away on May 30, 2023, with her daughter, Nancy, by her side. Cremation has taken place and a private family memorial service will take place at a future date. 

Wilma was born on August 3, 1923 to Glenn and Cecil Biles in Atwater, Ohio. She married Keith Kmetko on October 10, 1942 in Atwater and then moved To Tucson, Arizona. After having three daughters, Lecinda, Linda, and Nancy, the family moved to Glendale, AZ, where Wilma opened her dance studio, La Petite School of Dance. There she taught hundreds of students, some of whom went on to make dancing their career. She and her husband, Keith, were appreciated for their commitment to making all recital scenery by hand. 

Wilma and Keith were also known for their elaborate Christmas yard decorations, where Keith played Santa for the neighborhood children and they explored their creativity of winter in the Southwest with a snowman made of tumbleweeds. 

After retiring in 1985, she and Keith moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, where they became very involved in their community of Kachina Village. The community center was named after them due to their hard work and commitment to the village. 

Retirement did not slow her down as she stayed busy making crafts for her growing grandchildren and teaching the Dancing Grannies of Flagstaff. She led this group of retired women all around the state of Arizona, confidently sporting leather fringed vests and cowgirl boots in their performances. 

In 2001 Wilma and Keith moved to Carlsbad, New Mexico to be closer to family. There they continued crafting together, tending to their grape vines and tomato plants at their home beside the golf course. They enjoyed celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary alongside the entire family. 

Wilma is preceded in death by her husband of 65 years, Keith, her parents Glenn and Cecil Biles, brother Bob Biles, and daughter Lecinda Mitchell.

She is survived by her daughters Linda McCalister and Nancy Kiesau, grandchildren Jason and Leslie Mitchell, Heather Leeke, Jennifer Hanson, Jesus Kmetko, and Sara Horton, along with nine great-grandchildren. 

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Wilma Mae Kmetko, please visit our flower store.

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