Mary Elizabeth Gilbert, née Lyse, aged 91, died the morning of Thursday, June 3, 2021, in Silverdale, Washington.
Mary was born in Seattle, Washington, on Dec. 11, 1929, to parents Alvin and Margaret Lyse, and was the eldest of three children. She grew up in Wilbur, Washington, the Bay Area, and spent the years of Word War II in British Columbia. In 1952 she married Richard Harrell, having two children. They divorced in 1956, and she married Billy Joe Gilbert in 1964, having one child. She worked in social services in Omak, Washington, living 40-plus years in nearby Okanagan. In 1996 she moved to Fairbanks, Alaska, living there near her daughter and granddaughter. In 2012 she moved back to Washington, settling in Silverdale near her youngest son and his family until her final days.
Mary was a spirited and beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. As the matriarch of the family, she prided herself in keeping the family history, writing down all the stories and sharing it with her family, including distant cousins in the Midwest and in Denmark, where her own grandparents were from. She could always be found in good spirits, her laughter and funny stories filling the room. She loved gardening, mystery novels and sharing letters with loved ones.
Mary is survived by her three children, Katherine Harrell of Fairbanks, Alaska; Richard Gilbert of Bend, Oregon; and David Gilbert of Silverdale, Washington, and their families, including seven grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren, as well as her sister-in-law and her two nieces and two nephews and their families. She was preceded in death by her beloved sister, Margaret Nelson, and brother, Peter Lyse.
Her ashes will be laid to rest in the Lyse family plot next to her sister, Maggie, in the Wilbur Cemetery. Services will be given at a future date in September 2021.
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Published by Daily News-Miner on Jul. 18, 2021.