On November 16, 2021, our beloved wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and aunt has gone to be with the Lord after a long battle with a lung issue. Vivian K. Ulmer, also known as Little Viv, was born at the mouth of the Klamath River on June 9, 1940 to Vivian Smith and Marvin Smith. Growing up she spent every summer at “Dad’s Camp,” her family’s property at the Mouth of the Klamath River where she spent time with cousins, campers, and fishermen. She was a member of the Yurok Tribe. Vivian spent the majority of her life in Humboldt County. She graduated from Eureka High School in 1960. Soon after graduation, she married Brent Hand and they had three children. David, Rick, and Vickie. After her divorce she worked for Lazio’s Seafood Restaurant in Eureka as a Hostess. She loved music, to dance and sing. Her affection for all of God’s creatures was extraordinary.

Vivian met the love of her life John Ulmer in 1978. They married and joined together a blended family including Lori and Eric Ulmer. She loved being a stay at home mother and was a gourmet cook that genuinely enjoyed creating dishes and cooking for family and friends. It was an art form for her. Throughout her life, Viv was an excellent example of a Godly woman. She was on fire for God, a prayer warrior and counselor that would pray for anyone at any hour. She was devoted to the Lord and spent everyday deeply studying the Bible and worshiping God. She was a member of Faith Center Four Square Church in Eureka.

She was known as “The Pie Lady” in Humboldt County. She truly enjoyed making delicious homemade pie creations that were craved by many in the community as well as her own family.

Vivian is preceded in death by her mother Vivian Johnson, father Marvin Smith, and brother Marvin Smith Jr. “Sonny”. She is survived by her husband John Ulmer; son David Hand, grandsons Alex and Jacob, granddaughter, Grace; son, Rick Hand, grandson, Kyle, granddaughter Chelsea; daughter Vickie Hand Goff, son-in-law Garret Goff, granddaughter Nichole Goff and grandson Scott Goff. Step daughter Lori Ulmer Manodori, grandsons Blaine and Judah O’Shaughnessy, granddaughter Cherie O’Shaughnessy; step son Eric Ulmer, grandson Johnathan Ulmer; Sister, Donna Eddy, Brother in law Larry Eddy. Brother; Melvin Smith “Buddy,” as well as many loved cousins, nieces and nephews.

The family would like to express gratitude for the wonderful help given by Hospice of Humboldt.

A celebration of life will be held at Faith Center 1032 Bay Street, Eureka, on Sat. December 4 at 11 a.m. Please wear something purple or colorful!

Feel free to make a donation to Faith Center The Bridge Youth Ministry in lieu of flowers.


The obituary above was submitted on behalf of Vivian Ulmer’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here.