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Gisela Hess Garvey


1929 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
Gisela Hess Garvey Obituary
PORTSMOUTH - Gisela Hess Garvey, 89, passed away peacefully on Sunday, January 6, 2019, surrounded by her family. She was the devoted wife of the late Michael J. Garvey, and beloved mother of Ellen Garvey of Newcastle, N.H., Mark Garvey of Concord, Mass., Luke Garvey of Wellington, Fla., and Peter Garvey of Plantation, Fla. She is also survived by nine grandchildren and one great-grandson.

Gisela Hess was born in Eschwege, Germany on March 1, 1929. At the age of 19, she rode her single-speed bicycle from her hometown to Frankfurt, a distance of 120 miles, in order to obtain a visa to come to the United States, where she would work for her uncle at a luncheonette in Flushing, N.Y. It was there that she met the love of her life, Michael Garvey, whom she married in the spring of 1954.

Gisela and Michael had four children. Sadly, Michael died in June of 1960, leaving Gisela to raise the children as a single mother. Her intrepid nature and determination to give her children a good life led her to work as a school crossing guard in Flushing. She moved her family to New Paltz in 1968. While in New Paltz, she worked as a florist, and later as a school bus driver for children with special needs. She volunteered for her church, for the Boy Scouts, and for the Red Cross.

In 1993, Gisela left New Paltz and moved to Eliot, Maine, to be closer to her daughter, Ellen, and Ellen's children. She was devoted to her grandchildren, providing child care whenever she was needed. While living in Eliot, and later in Portsmouth, Gisela was an active member of St. Raphael's Church, now known as The Parish of The Ascension of the Lord. She sang in the choir, and contributed her famous horseradish to all church bazaars. Devoutly spiritual, Gisela never missed a weekly Mass. In her 25 years in the Seacoast community, Gisela made a name for herself as an expert gardener, both privately and in the public gardens at Strawbery Banke Museum. She won an award at Strawbery Banke in 2015 to honor her many years of service.

As a deeply religious person, Gisela spoke frequently about her daily conversations with her Lord. Toward the end of her life, she spoke longingly about the eternal peace of going home to God. Taking the love of her family with her, Gisela is home now, gathered into the arms of Jesus.

SERVICES: A Wake will be held on Wednesday evening of January 16, 2019, from 5-7 p.m., at the J S Pelkey Funeral Home, 125 Old Post Rd., Kittery, ME 03904. A Funeral Mass will be held the following Thursday, January 17, 2019, at 11 a.m., St Raphaels Church, 6 Whipple Rd., Kittery, ME 03904. To leave online condolences please visit www.jspelkeyfuneralhome.com. Care for the Garvey family has been entrusted to the J S Pelkey Funeral Home.
Published in Seacoastonline.com from Jan. 12 to Jan. 15, 2019
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