Mary Oliver Gabrielson (1924 - 2015)

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    - Peter Pelland
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Obituary

WILLIAMSBURG - Mary Oliver Gabrielson, died Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015, at her home in Williamsburg. Mary and her husband Ira, who predeceased her, lived at Havabrook, the farm to which her parents, the late Major General L.E. Oliver and Janet Putnam Oliver had retired in 1948. Mary and Ira were married at Havabrook later that year.

Mary is survived by her children Debby, David, Hugh and Carl, who were with her at her passing, and six grandchildren, Isabella, Sam, Oliver, Thomas, Kate and Zachary. She will be greatly missed by her brother Thomas, her sister Rachel, and many nieces and nephews.

Mary was born in 1924 in Juneau, Alaska, graduated from Smith College in 1946, and earned a medical degree from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University in 1950, where she had met and fallen in love with Ira. Their careers in public health and medicine took them to Baltimore, New Haven, Berkeley, and Philadelphia, where they were both members of the faculty of the Medical College of Pennsylvania until their retirement in 1989. Mary was always deeply committed to women's health and family planning, and was a practicing obstetrician/gynecologist. After retirement, she continued to see patients two days a week at clinics in Springfield and Pittsfield.

Mary and Ira shared many passions, including travel, gardening and mountain climbing. They were both members of the Appalachian Mountain Club and the 4,000 Footer Club, having climbed all of the 48 peaks higher than that elevation in New Hampshire. To her family's amazement, she took up flying in her 70s, and owned and flew her own Cessna 172R into her 80s. Mary was an avid reader and was a volunteer at the Meekins Library in Williamsburg.

According to her wishes, the family will be holding a private memorial service later this year for family and close friends.

Contributions can be made in her honor to the Meekins Library, 2 Williams St., Williamsburg, MA 01096.

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Published in Daily Hampshire Gazette on Aug. 18, 2015
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