Wilbur Cemetery Obits     

                                                                                                         Submitted By Marge Womach


                                                                                               Page G


Gardner, Wesley; ( b. 1893,  d. Dec 26, 1973) 57/7   

“Funeral services were held Dec 29 at the Creston Christian Church for Wesley J Gardner, who died in Davenport , Dec 26.  The Rev James F. Farrell was the officiating clergyman. Interment was in the Wilbur Cemetery .  Seven grandsons, Jerry Lee Gardner of Espanola, Wally Gardner of Selah, Don Martin of Seattle, and Randy Hatten, Gale Gardner and Rod Gardner of Wilbur, served as pall bearers. Honorary pall bearers were Ben Johnson, Arthur Hatten, Gwen Traner, Tony Brown and Dellis Angstrom, all of Creston; Philip Dennison of Miles; and James Lane and Keith Kennedy of Wilbur. Gardner is survived by his wife, Essie, at the home; three sons, Ervin Gardner of Selah, Lester Gardner, Wilbur, and Larry Gardner, Creston; two daughters, Anecia Hatten, Creston, and Geraldine Martin, Kirkland; three brothers, Jack Gardner of Spokane, John Gardner and Phillip Gardner of Creston, and four sisters, Effie Iverson, of Colfax, Ruth Keefe, Spokane, Elsie Andrews, Loon Lake, and Maggie Huguenin of Chewelah, in addition to 15 grandchildren, five great grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews. Gardner, born in 1893 was married in 1918 inColville; the couple first home at Addy, then moved to Inchelium and then to Creston where they have lived the past 33 years. He worked as a machinist for the original Lincoln Lumber Company and later for Boise-Cascade before retiring.” (Davenport Times: 1-10-1974) “Wesley J. Gardner.—His home, Creston, WA. Survived by his wife, Mrs. Essie Gardner, at the home; three sons, Ervin Gardner, Selah, WA; Lester Gardner, Wilbur, WA; Larry Gardner, Creston, WA; two daughters, Mrs. Orman (Anecia) Happen, Creston, WA; Mrs. Glen (Geraldine) Martin, Kirkland, WA; three brothers, Jack Gardner, Spokane; John and Phil Gardner, both of Creston; four sisters, Mrs. Ruth Keeffe; Mrs. Elsie Andrews, Mrs. Effie Iverson, and Mrs. Maggie Hugenim; 15 grandchildren; 5 great grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews. Funeral services will be held Saturday, Dec 29 at 10 a.m. from the Creston Christian Church, the Rev James Farrell officiating. Interment will be at Wilbur, WA, Cemetery. The Robertson Funeral Home, Wilbur, WA, is in charge.” (Spokesman Review: 1973; scrapbook item)


Geib, Clemmens; ( b. 1903, d. 1938 ( 198/9  

 “Clemmens Geib, 34, Wilbur, died Wednesday at his farm home near Wilbur of infection of the throat, after an illness of three days. he was a son of the retired pioneers, Mr. and Mrs. Et Geib, and one of the successful ranchers. Less than a year ago he erected a $5000 residence. His widow and two daughters survive, as do his parents, three brothers and two sisters.” (Odessa Record: 3-17-1938)


Geib, Florence M.; ( b. Jul 18, 1905, d. Jul 21, 2000) 198/5  

 “A memorial service was held for Florence M. Geib on Friday, July 28, at the Community Presbyterian Church in Wilbur. Mrs. Geib, who was 95 years old, died Friday, July 21, 2000, in Milwaukie, OR, where she had lived for the past 10 years. She was born on July 18, 1905, in Odessa, the daughter of Warren and Emma (Beck) Schoonover. She graduated from Odessa High School in 1922 and from Washington State College in 1926. She taught English and drama at Rogers High School in Spokane and Harrington. She married Albert Geib in 1929, and they farmed near Wilbur for more than 50 years. Mr. Geib died in 1988. She is survived by a son, Gary W. Geib and his wife Marian, of Spokane, a daughter, Glenda G and her husband Ross W. McLaughlin, of Lake Oswego, OR; 4 grandchildren, and 5 great grandchildren. In addition to her husband, she was preceded in death by two brothers, John Schoonover and Victor Schoonover.” (Odessa Record: 8-03-2000)


Gent, Mrs. A. ( Emma);  ( b. Nov 13, 1864, d. Sep 05, 1902) 120/3 

"Mrs. A. Gent, who lived five miles from Wilbur, took a dose of strychnine, with suicidal intent, Monday morning last, and died shortly after. No reason was given for the deed. (Sep 19, 1902, Sprague Times)  


Gent, Elmer;  ( b. 1904, d.  1926) 129/3  

“Elmer Gent, 17 year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Gent died at Wilbur of meningitis Saturday. No other cases of the disease are reported there.” (Odessa Record: 7-16-1926)  


Gilson, Geo W.;  ( b. 1850,  d. 1904) 119/11  

Geo W. Gilson, a brother of Mrs. Joe W. Owen, died at Spokane last Tuesday night, and was brought to Wilbur for interment, the funeral services being held at the home of his niece, Mrs. A. J. Pemberton, yesterday. Services were conducted by Rev. Wm Boyle of the Presbyterian Church.—Register (Jun 03, 1904, Citizen)  


Gollehon, Gerald Glenn, Jr.;  ( b. Mar 31, 1935, d. May 28, 2007) 169/7   

“Gerald Glenn Gollehon, Jr., passed away on May 28, 2007 in Wilbur, WA. He was 44.  Gerald is survived by his wife Erin and two children, Brett and Allison, at the home in Wilbur; his mother, Janice Herdrick of Wilbur; one sister, Geraldine Callahan and husband Ted of Colorado; one brother, James Gollehon and wife Ronda of Wilbur; grandfather, Dean Angstrom of Wilbur; and grandmother, Millie Wagner of Odessa. Other survivors include a special aunt, Edith Roloff of Odessa; his father-in-law and mother-in-law, Loyd and Carol Stafford, and their three daughters, Cheryl Stafford, Shannon Radoll, and Angela Schultz, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Gerald was known as a loving father and husband. He was a Cub Scout Leader and a Captain for Alaska Airlines with over 18 years of service. A 1981 graduate of Creston High School, Gerald went on to graduate from Embry-Riddell Aeronautical University in Prescott, Arizona. Upon graduation, he was retained as the youngest professor in the school’s history. Memorial services will be held on Saturday, June 2, 2007, at 11 a.m. at Wilbur Lutheran Church with Pastor Holly Gunby officiating. Strate Funeral Home of Wilbur is caring for the family.” (The Wilbur Register: May 31, 2007)


Goodlake, Jenny Lovie;  ( b. 1880, d. 1902) 43/3  

 "Miss Lovie Goodlake, daughter of J. W. Goodlake, a blacksmith, was killed near Keller, Sunday evening. With Miss Garwood, whom she was visiting, Miss Goodlake was horseback riding, and about 6 PM as they were riding a narrow trail on the side of a mountain Miss Goodlake guided her horse too close to the edge to avoid a mud hole. The horse slipped over the side and fell backward on top of her, pinning her against a log and breaking her back. Death was almost instantaneous. The remains were brought to Wilbur and taken to the Hay undertaking rooms. Miss Goodlake was 21 years old and was well and favorably known. "(LCT, Jul 13, 1906)  


Goodman,  Claude;  ( b. May 25, 1907, d. Nov 24, 1946)  75/12 

“An early morning fire Sunday took the life of Claude Goodman, Wilbur, veteran of WW II, who served throughout the campaign in Africa and in Italy. The five-room house in which he lived alone was in flames when Melvin Brock chanced to note the blaze and turned in the alarm, about 6 a.m.  Promptness on the part of the firemen saved the residence of Robert Bahr, about 25 feet from the burned building. The Goodman house was a total loss.  Witnesses said that the flames originated from an overheated coal-burning stove. It is presumed that Mr. Goodman retuned to his bed and fell asleep after starting the fire. The position of the body indicated he made an effort to escape, failing because the smoke suffocated him.  He is survived by an only brother, City Councilman Lloyd Goodman. His parents, now deceased, who were pioneers of Marlin, moved to Wilbur about 20 years ago.” (Odessa Record: 11-28-1946)


Goodman, Lila  L. ; ( b. Jun 30, 1904 d. 1906 Oct 20 ch/o D.S. & I.E.) 73/10

Lila Elizabeth Goodman, 1904-1906, was removed to Wilbur City Cemetery. “Lila L. Goodman. Died: Oct 29, 1906; age 2 yrs 3 mos 29 days,  at Krupp. Born: June 30, 1904 in Lincoln Co. Father:  Daniel Goodman born England ; Mother:  Iona Kiner born Iowa. Informant: Iona Goodman of Krupp, WA. Cause of death:  diphtheria. Physician:  H. A. Wright, MD. Burial: Fairview Cemetery on Oct 30, 1906. No undertaker.” (Lincoln Co Auditor Death Ledger & Death Certificate #0360)


Gordon, John: No Information. Burial.

“Jesse Rush and John Gordon, well diggers, were killed at Wade Cole’s ranch, 16 miles from Wilbur on Tuesday. They tried to thaw out dynamite in the oven, with the usual result.” (Citizen: 12-19-1902) 


GRAY, Della W.                1873-1957                        45/6

GRAY, William P.              1878-1957        s/w Della W.    45/6

“Gray—Green. From the Wilbur Register. William P Gray and Miss Della Wray Green were married at Spokane 10 a.m. on Christmas Day, by Rev George Giboney, at the latter’s residence. When Mr and Mrs Gray returned home that evening their joy was turned to sorrow by the information that the groom’s mother had died during the afternoon. When they left, on Saturday morning, that lady appeared to be on the safe road to recovery, but a sudden relapse soon proved fatal.” (Citizen: 1-06-1905)


Green, Viola;  ( b. 1902, d. Feb 10, 1974) 57/8  

“Viola W. Green, the daughter of Peter and Kirsten Miller, was born at Winona, MN, May 15, 1902. She passed away at Seattle , Feb 10, 1974. She lived most of her life in Wilbur, and for the past 19 years had resided in Seattle.  She worked for Northwest Hospital in Seattle, and in 1971 she was honored by being named Employee of the Year in that institution. For this honor she received a cash award, also and donated this to The Tumor Clinic at Swedish Hospital.  Mrs. Green was a member of the Wilbur Lutheran Church. She is survived by her husband Ralph A Green at the home in Seattle; two sons, George W Green, Wilbur; Gordon W Green, Seattle; one daughter, Mrs. Leo (Gloria) Klein, Seattle; five brothers, Adolph Miller, Reardan; Etlar Miller, Brownsville, Texas; Victor Miller, Lewiston, Idaho; Otto Miller, Spokane; Folmar Miller, Wilbur; one sister, Mrs. Flora W. Jones, Seattle; nine grandchildren and two great grandchildren. Funeral services were held Thursday, Feb 14, at 11 a.m. from the Wilbur Lutheran Church, Pastor A. F. Gerstmann officiating. Pall bearers were: Kevin and Terry Green, Russell Doane, R. James Harris, Robert Bauer, and Richard Miller. Burial was in the Wilbur Cemetery. The Robertson Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.” (Wilbur Register: 2-21-1974; photo in original)*


Gyorfi, Albert John   (1919-1942) US Navy Flyer, "Gave his life in service"  191/1 (d. 6-14-1942)

“Almost exactly 64 years from the day he died when his plane crashed on the side of Kiska Volcano in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska, Albert J. Gyorfi is coming home to Wilbur. A military graveside service will be held for Gyorfi at the Wilbur Cemetery at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 17, 2006. Gyorfi, a 1938 graduate of Wilbur High School and a Navy Aviator, died on June 14, 1942, along with his six crewmates, while taking part in a four-day bombing mission against the Japanese, which had invaded the island of Kiska. Gyorfi joined the Navy Reserves shortly after graduating and enlisted in the regular Navy when his hitch was up with the reserves. He was only 23 at the time of his death.  Over a year later, in a letter dated Oct 26, 1943, Gyorfi’s parents, Michael and Emma Gyorfi, received word from the Navy that their son’s remains had been found and buried near the wreckage of the US Navy PBY-Catalina twin-engine amphibious reconnaissance plane. The letter stated, ‘Your son, Albert John Gyorfi, was a member of an airplane crew which failed to return from a bombing attack on Kiska Harbor. Despite a thorough and long-continued search of accessible islands and the sea in that area, no trace was found of the plane or its crew. Since the reoccupation of Kiska (by the US), however, the badly damaged wreckage of an airplane bearing the number of the airplane in which your son was last reported, has been discovered on the west-northwest slope of Kiska volcano. There was evidence that the seven men had died in the crash. There had been seven men in the missing plane’s crew. Burial was made at the scene of the crash. This discovery lends strong support to the findings of the Secretary of the Navy that your son lost his life. The Navy Dept joins you in respect for the honored memory of your son who died in the performance of his duty and in the service of his country.’  A short time later, the family received another letter posthumously awarding the Purple Heart to Gyorfi since he was a member of the US Navy and was killed in action. Some months earlier, the family had received word from the Navy that Albert, an Aviation Pilot Third Class, had been awarded a medal for meritorious achievement while in aerial combat as a navigator and gunner of a patrol plane in action against the Japanese during the Aleutian Islands campaign from June 10 to June 14, 1942… After learning that their son’s remains had been found and buried on Mt Kiska, Albert’s parents held a memorial service in Wilbur and had a headstone with his name on it placed at the Wilbur Cemetery. Gyorfi was the first local man to die in WW II. Following the war when the first soldiers returned home and started a VFW Post, they named it in his honor. The Albert J Gyorfi VFW Post #6268 is still active today. After the war, the military made an effort to locate the common grave of the seven crewmen from the plane, but were unsuccessful and the remains of all seven were declared to be non-recoverable. The grave had been marked with a wooden marker, which read ‘Seven USN Airmen’ but it was not found. Mountain ice covered the gravesite and the airplane wreckage, and it remained hidden until recent years when global warming melted the ice and left the site visible once more.  In July 2001, Ian L Jones, a biology professor from Iowa who was teaching at Memorial University of Newfoundland in Canada, came upon the wreckage while hiking on Kiska Volcano as he conducted research on Norway rats. A year later, in July 2002, he revisited the site and this time found the plane’s identification number. He reported it to the military and in August 2003, a recovery team arrived at the wreckage and found the gravesite. The remains of the seven crewmen were recovered and DNA testing done. In Feb 2005, blood samples were taken for comparison purposes from Albert Gyorfi’s two surviving sisters (there had been seven children in the Gyorfi family), Leona Gyorfi of Wilbur and Marie Goodman of Davenport. A month later they received a report that a match had been found and some of the remains were identified as those of Albert Gyorfi. A team of five people from the Joint Prisoner of War and Missing in Action Accounting Command visited the family at Leona’s home in Wilbur in Nov 2005 to inform them about the entire situation and answer their questions… The remains specifically identified through DNA testing to be those of Albert Gyorfi’s will be brought from Hawaii, where they are currently located, and buried at the Wilbur Cemetery on June 17…” (Wilbur Register: 6-01-2006; photo in uniform)



Wilbur Cemetery Obits, Lincoln County, Washington

submitted by Marge Womach, 2009.

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