Gladiola Marie Flowers Gladiola Flowers, (AKA Gladys Robinson), 85, long-time Olympia realtor and artist, died this past Sunday after a brief illness related to complications from Multiple Sclerosis. Glady always claimed she would eventually die of boredom from this disease, however she was never boring. Remarkably, she managed to carve out a rich and full life in just a half a room, at the Olympia nursing home where she resided for the past sixteen years. After raising her four children, she earned a bachelor's degree from The Evergreen State College in 1983. At age 83, she changed her name from "Gladys Robinson" to "Gladiola Flowers," and she continued to brighten every room she entered. Despite great physical challenges, she never let MS define her life, and her bravery, resilience and grace on this battlefield is legendary. Gladiola is survived by her two daughters, Shelley (Keith) Weber of Toledo, WA and Jennifer (Paul) Kennard of Seattle; one granddaughter, Chelsea Nagel of Olympia; sister Carol Goulet of Santa Cruz, CA; and brother Dick Rasmussen of Gig Harbor and Yuma, AZ; many loving nieces and nephews; and her long-time nursing home roommate, Barb Simmons, whom she lovingly referred to as her adopted 'little sister.' She is preceded in death by her children Cyndy and Robby Robinson of Olympia; her father and mother, Frank and Bertha "Mert" Rasmussen of Tacoma; her sister Ruthie Rowland of St. Petersburg, FL; and sister Beverly Nayer of Gig Harbor, WA. A celebration of Gladiola's life will take place on Gladiola's 86th birthdate, January 17, 2013, at Puget Sound Health Care Center, 4001 Capital Mall Dr. SW, Olympia, WA 98502, at 2pm. The family would like to thank the staff and aides of Puget Sound Health Care Center in Olympia for the love and service they provided to Gladiola over the past sixteen years. In lieu of flowers for Gladiola, the family requests memorial gifts be made on her behalf to the National MS Society, PO Box 4527, New York, NY 10163 or by visiting www.nationalmssociety.org and click on donate. A remembrance can be left in her guest book by visiting www.dignitymemorial.com and entering her name in the "Obituaries" link. You can also view the "Gladiola Flowers" photo page posted on Flickr at tinyurl.com/ad4s2fb. It will be updated in weeks ahead.
The Guest Book is expired.
Published in The Olympian on Jan. 12, 2013