Beehive Homes Community Spotlight: Leola Buffo
Every community has people in it that make it great. I’m talking about salt-of- the-earth kinda people. Join us as each month as we highlight one of our longtime members in the community.
Leola Buffo was born in 1925 in Spanish Fork. She was born in her family’s home on 600 North. Her father, Thomas Bona, and her mother, Veola, raised seven children in that tiny humble home. The Bonas lived there for many years until it was eventually torn down and a new home built in its place. The family owned the whole block and would later develop it so every child would have a building lot.
Thomas had a large farm in Benjamin where he raised beef cattle, grew alfalfa and had a large plot of sugar beets. “One time when I was very young, it was time to thin out the beet rows. My dad told me to thin out one row. I looked down the row; it looked like a mile long. I told my dad I didn’t want to thin out the beets. He walked me over to a large tree and sat me down in the shade, and told me to stay put until the chores were done. My father was so kind and gentle — I loved him very much,” Leola said. She would take on the nickname “Spud” after that day, maybe because she refused to thin out the beets and it was her father’s way of keeping his temper.
Leola attended Spanish Fork High School. She loved business classes and excelled in the difficult subjects. “I really enjoyed the business subjects. The boys usually took the business classes, but I knew I wanted to learn those subjects, so I took as many as I could and gained a good understanding of business,” Leola said. Soon Geneva Steel took notice of Leola and as a senior in high school she applied to work in its finance department as a clerk.
She worked for Geneva Steel for two years and then the bomb fell on Hiroshima. and taught at Orem High School. Geneva laid of hundreds of workers After six years, he went to work for Geneva after that and production of steel products Steel where he was employed until he slowed across the country. A little while retired. Frank and Leola owned a gift store after the bomb fell, a boy she had met on Main Street in Spanish Fork - it was a years earlier came home from the war. Hallmark store. Frank Buffo served in the Army and toured When Frank turned 60 years old, he retired, in Europe. He and Leola had met years and Leola retired a few years later. before at a wedding where they danced “We went on a three-week tour through for the first time. After a short courtship, Europe. It was completely guided. We Frank and Leola were married in Leola’s went to Spain, England, Morocco and mother’s house in 1947. They eventually some other cities I can’t even remember. built a home on one of the family lots and We finished in Hawaii. Frank and I loved had one child, LeAnn Buffo. spending time together, and we loved a
Leola began working at the public welfare good time,” Leola said. Frank and Leola department in Provo. “I used to ride were married for 67 years. Frank passed the Red Refer train from Spanish Fork to away in 2015. Leola has two grandchildren Provo and walk two blocks to work,” Leola and five great-grandchildren. She said. Later, she took the Civil Service lives in Beehive Homes of Spanish Fork. test and did very well, and soon the Bureau “They take care of everything here, the of Reclamation recruited her to work in its food is good and always ready, my room Spanish Fork office. After several years, is clean and bed made up. The staff is very they opened a new building in Provo and kind. What more could I want?” Leola Leola transferred to it. Later, she worked said. Thank you, Leola Buffo, for raising for the Social Security office in Provo. All such a great kid and being a member of told, Leola spent 30 years working in government our community. You may visit or contact service. During this time, Frank her at Beehive Homes, 858 E. 100 South, earned a degree at Brigham Young University Spanish Fork, UT 84660.