Pauline Gourlay died on Oct. 14, 2020 in Dearborn, MI, at 100 years of age. Born in Detroit to John and Paraskievia Labaz Bogush, she was the fifth of six children, and the last one to die. Her family immigrated to Detroit from what is now western Ukraine, and like many first-generation immigrants she aspired to be as American as possible, having little interest in her Ukrainian background. Growing up during the Great Depression she became hard working, frugal, and dismissive of things she saw as luxuries.
Pauline earned a B.S. from Wayne State University and worked as a medical technologist, then married Stewart Gourlay and raised three children. After returning to the workforce, she became a teaching technologist in the bacteriology lab at Henry Ford Hospital.
After retirement, she and Stewart moved to Dearborn and became active members of Dearborn Congregational Church. Earlier she attended Detroit's Westminster Presbyterian, where she developed a love for their children's summer camp. Pauline's children and grandchildren attended and worked there, and great-grandchildren continue the tradition today.
In retirement, Pauline and Stewart enjoyed traveling, participating in Elderhostel trips, taking advantage of educational opportunities. As an artistic outlet, they enjoyed creating leaded-glass windows and lamps. After Stewart's death she moved to the Henry Ford Village, where she lived the rest of her years. There she was known as an excellent Scrabble player and continued to play with her friends even after her dementia limited her in many other ways. Her body gradually gave out and she died peacefully.
She is survived by her three children, John (Kathie) Gourlay, Bill (Ann) Gourlay, and Nancy (John) Morrison, eight grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
A memorial service will be postponed until next year. Donations in Pauline's memory may be made to Camp Westminster on Higgins Lake, at 17567 Hubbell Ave, Detroit MI 48235.
Published in The Detroit News & Detroit Free Press from Oct. 19 to Oct. 25, 2020.