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 Helena Gladys Ashby

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Helena Gladys Ashby

Birth
Noatak, Northwest Arctic Borough, Alaska, USA
Death
20 Oct 2005 (aged 74)
Homer, Kenai Peninsula Borough, Alaska, USA
Burial
Homer, Kenai Peninsula Borough, Alaska, USA
Plot
Block 2, Lot 36
Memorial ID
129339784 View Source

http://www.genealogybank.com/

HOMER: Newspaper Obituary and Death Notice

Anchorage Daily News (AK) - Friday, October 28, 2005

Homer resident Helena Gladys Ashby, 74, died Oct. 20, 2005, at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer while surrounded by friends.

A funeral was held Oct. 24 at Christian Community Church in Homer. The Rev. Raymond Arno officiated. Graveside services followed at Hickerson Memorial Cemetery in Homer.

Ms. Ashby was born Feb. 10, 1931, in Noatak to Wilson and Sarah Ashby. At age 9, she was snow blinded. She gradually lost her sight until, at age 16, she was totally blind. Three months was all she allowed herself to mourn, her family said.

In her 2002 book "We Alaskans," author Sharon Bushnell quoted Ms. Ashby as saying, "After three months I decided, 'I'm not the only one in this world who is blind,' and I got out of bed. I did little things, washing dishes and sweeping the floor. It was hard at first. I got frustrated a lot. Then I started cooking and baking and pretty soon I was doing all the household chores."

At age 24, Ms. Ashby moved to Kotzebue with her family. There, she met James Mac- Intyre. He gave her an accordion, which boosted her confidence as she learned to play. In 1957, they visited Seattle, where she was treated for tuberculosis and took Braille lessons. Previously, she had loved to read, and was grateful that she could do so again. In 1958, she and Mr. MacIntyre returned to Alaska, unsure of where to settle. They gave Seward a brief try and ultimately decided to live in Homer.

Ms. Ashby enjoyed learning to play the piano, fishing with "Mac," and staying in touch with family members.

Her family said: "After MacIntyre's death, she established a network of friends who remained loyal to her until her death. She frequently attended the Friendship Center, where she was a popular and optimistic presence."

Bushnell's book also quoted Ms. Ashby as saying, "I'm grateful that I wasn't born blind. I have strong memories of color, of beautiful scenery, of all the seasons. I'm lucky, all the things I've been able to see. Mac was my first friend, but I've got lots of good friends now. Life isn't always easy, but most of the time it's good."

Ms. Ashby made several trips to Seattle to visit the large MacIntyre clan. Her most recent trip was in May 2005.

She was preceded in death by her best friend, James Mac-Intyre. Survivors are her sister and brother-in-law, Joe and Lydia Harris of Kotzebue; stepbrother and stepsister-in-law, Herbert and Victoria Onalik of Noatak; and many nieces and nephews within Alaska.

Arrangements were by Homer Funeral Home.

http://www.genealogybank.com/

HOMER: Newspaper Obituary and Death Notice

Anchorage Daily News (AK) - Friday, October 28, 2005

Homer resident Helena Gladys Ashby, 74, died Oct. 20, 2005, at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer while surrounded by friends.

A funeral was held Oct. 24 at Christian Community Church in Homer. The Rev. Raymond Arno officiated. Graveside services followed at Hickerson Memorial Cemetery in Homer.

Ms. Ashby was born Feb. 10, 1931, in Noatak to Wilson and Sarah Ashby. At age 9, she was snow blinded. She gradually lost her sight until, at age 16, she was totally blind. Three months was all she allowed herself to mourn, her family said.

In her 2002 book "We Alaskans," author Sharon Bushnell quoted Ms. Ashby as saying, "After three months I decided, 'I'm not the only one in this world who is blind,' and I got out of bed. I did little things, washing dishes and sweeping the floor. It was hard at first. I got frustrated a lot. Then I started cooking and baking and pretty soon I was doing all the household chores."

At age 24, Ms. Ashby moved to Kotzebue with her family. There, she met James Mac- Intyre. He gave her an accordion, which boosted her confidence as she learned to play. In 1957, they visited Seattle, where she was treated for tuberculosis and took Braille lessons. Previously, she had loved to read, and was grateful that she could do so again. In 1958, she and Mr. MacIntyre returned to Alaska, unsure of where to settle. They gave Seward a brief try and ultimately decided to live in Homer.

Ms. Ashby enjoyed learning to play the piano, fishing with "Mac," and staying in touch with family members.

Her family said: "After MacIntyre's death, she established a network of friends who remained loyal to her until her death. She frequently attended the Friendship Center, where she was a popular and optimistic presence."

Bushnell's book also quoted Ms. Ashby as saying, "I'm grateful that I wasn't born blind. I have strong memories of color, of beautiful scenery, of all the seasons. I'm lucky, all the things I've been able to see. Mac was my first friend, but I've got lots of good friends now. Life isn't always easy, but most of the time it's good."

Ms. Ashby made several trips to Seattle to visit the large MacIntyre clan. Her most recent trip was in May 2005.

She was preceded in death by her best friend, James Mac-Intyre. Survivors are her sister and brother-in-law, Joe and Lydia Harris of Kotzebue; stepbrother and stepsister-in-law, Herbert and Victoria Onalik of Noatak; and many nieces and nephews within Alaska.

Arrangements were by Homer Funeral Home.


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