Mary L. Ward, 94, a resident of the Hood River Valley, died peacefully in Hood River, Ore., on Nov. 13, 2016, surrounded by family.
Mary was born in Odell, Ore., to Andrew and Vera (Peterson) White on Feb. 24, 1922. She graduated high school in 1940 and was excited to begin working and earning her own wages. Her many jobs included working at an ice cream shop in Eugene, Ore., and JC Penny’s and the Chinese restaurant in Hood River. Mary and Maynard met through a friend in Odell when Maynard invited her to go to Koberg Beach with him and his date. On August 11, 1941, she and Maynard Ward were married. Their first home was in Chehalis, Wash. Within a few weeks, Maynard received his military draft number. Mary traveled with Maynard to his many stations: San Francisco, Calif., and Fairbanks and Wrangell, Alaska, were some of the many places they visited.
Mary and Maynard returned to civilian life long enough for their four kids to graduate from Wy’east High School in Odell. Mary worked for the AGA packing plant while also volunteering with 4-H and the Boy Scouts. She and Maynard returned to Alaska until October 1982, when they settled back into their home in Odell. Mary was an avid gardener and cook. Mary was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She was a self-sufficient woman who never let anything go to waste. Mary spoke with kindness and wisdom — always with care toward others.
Mary leaves behind two of her children: John Ward and wife Penny of Florence, Ore., and Barbara Ward Mathis and husband Alvin of Boardman, Ore. She was blessed with nine grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and four great-great grandsons. She was preceded in death by her loving husband, Maynard, son Ron Ward, daughter Nancy Ward Steele and two great granddaughters.
Services are planned for 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 16 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1825 May St., Hood River. Graveside rites will follow on Thursday, Nov. 17 at Willamette National Cemetery of Portland, Ore., where she will be laid to rest by her husband, Maynard.
Memorials are encouraged to be made in Mary’s name to the Wy’East Fire Department.
Arrangements under the direction of Anderson's Tribute Center (Funerals • Receptions • Cremations), 1401 Belmont Ave., Hood River.
Visit www. AndersonsTributeCenter.com to leave a note of condolence for the family.
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