Elva GuyerNovember 10, 1925 ~ September 9, 2017 (age 91)
Elva Lou Ellen (Gribble) Guyer passed away on September 9, 2017 in Peoria, Arizona. Funeral services for Elva will be held on Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 2:00 PM at Coles Tribute Center, 1950 Place Street, Baker City. Interment will follow at Mt. Hope Cemetery.
Elva was born on November 10, 1925 to Austin Brooks Gribble and Lillian Louise (Ray) Gribble in Bakersfield, California. Living with her grandmother, Ellen Ward, she attended Fruitvale School in Rosedale, California and graduated from Kern County Union High School in 1943. While in high school, Elva was invited to sing with the Bakersfield Community College singers and she sang with a band at many USO events.
Following graduation, she worked for Lauck’s Bakery in Fresno, California to save money for college. In the fall, Elva met Lt. Donald R. Guyer, a Marine Corps pilot flying out of Mojave, California. They became engaged in December, just before he was sent to the South Pacific.
When he returned, they were married on Elva’s 19th birthday, November 10, 1944 in Fresno, California. As a newly married couple, they moved to Sanford, Florida for a year to complete Don’s Marine service. After his discharge, they returned to Baker, Oregon where Don began his career with Eastern Oregon Savings and Loan and Elva shared her vocal talent with the community. While in California, at a Savings and Loan Convention, she was chosen to sing on the Art Linkletter Radio Show.
Don was called back into the Marine Corps in 1952. They lived in Santa Ana, California and Pensacola, Florida. Upon returning to Baker in 1953, Elva worked at May’s Music Store and sang for community events. She taught ballet and tap for over 10 years, sang with the United Methodist Church, and led a junior choir.
In 1954, Elva won a KBKR contest which qualified her to open the Oregon State Fair at Ted Mack’s “Oregon Amateur Hour”.
In 1959, Elva and Don moved to La Grande with the opening of the first branch of Pioneer Federal Savings and Loan. Mrs. Guyer began working in the tax department at Union County Court House where she continued for almost 20 years. She sang with the Eastern Oregon Symphony Singers and United Methodist Church Choir.
Elva and Don returned to Baker in 1980 when Don became President of Pioneer Federal. She loved decorating for United Methodist Church events. Elva and her sister-in-law, Shirley Guyer, started the Methodist Church Bazaar in an attempt to provide the church with particular needs. Elva gave Leo Adler House tours and started Christian Comfort Creators that continues to meet in the United Methodist Church.
Mrs. Guyer was a supportive spouse in Don’s many organizations, a member of Eastern Oregon Star, and the United Methodist Church. They had many fun filled adventures traveling with their travel trailer and going to Yuma, Arizona for the winters.
Elva is survived by her daughter, Ellen Youngbluth and her husband David of Prineville, Oregon and Buckeye, Arizona, as well as their son Retired Marine Major Steven O’Connor and his wife, Retired Navy Commander Alda and their daughters, Madeline and Kaylin; her brother Guy McCoy and his wife Sue; her nieces and nephews Randy Guyer and wife Mary Jane, Janet Chandler and her husband George, Donald G. Guyer and his wife Rose, Vickie Kirkwood, Dr. Robert R. McCoy and his wife Amy, Kathy Krob and her husband Jeff, Sandra Mc Coy, and Robert G. McCoy as well as numerous great nieces and nephews.
Mrs. Guyer was preceded in death by her parents, Austin Gribble and Lillian (Gribble) McCoy, her husband Donald Rudolph Guyer, her brother Ray Larkin McCoy, and her uncle Russell Ward who was like a brother.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Elva L. Guyer’s memory may be made to the United Methodist Church Memorial Fund of Baker City or the Shrine Hospital for Children. This may be done through Coles Tribute Center, 1950 Place Street, Baker City, Oregon 97814.