Recommend Loraine's obituary to your friends
Loraine Stuart

Obituary of Loraine S. Stuart

Loraine S. Stuart Salem, OR Loraine Stuart died on February 9, 2023. She was born on December 21, 1926 in Iowa. She was a longtime resident of Southern California, and after moving to Oregon in 1995, she quickly became a prominent member of the Salem community. She was a member of the 100 Good People, and she also helped to found the Salem Interfaith Hospitality Network (now Family Promise of the Mid-Willamette Valley) and the Salem-Keizer Coalition for Equality. She treated everyone she met with kindness and respect, and her family meant the world to her. Born Loraine Gertrude Steele in Iowa to Meade Steele and Grace Rosebrook Steele, she was raised in the town of Coon Rapids, where her family owned a drug store. She earned both her Bachelor of Music (1948) and her Master of Music (1949) from Drake University. It was after this, while working at William Penn College (now William Penn University), that she met Richard “Paul” Stuart (1926-1995). They married and had two children, Andrew Meade Stuart (1953-1975) and Mary Ellen Kennedy (née Stuart). In 1962, they left Iowa for Los Angeles County, California, where she obtained her teaching credential from the University of Southern California in 1963. She then became a teacher at George Washington Carver Junior High (now Middle School) where she taught music and later English as a Second Language (ESL) until she retired in 1987. Loraine has been a proud Unitarian–and later Unitarian Universalist–since the age of 17. While living in California, she was a member of the Unitarian Universalist Society of Whittier, where she was an accompanist and a member of the choir. As part of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Salem, she continued in these roles. In addition, she played an active role in the congregation’s Women’s Alliance and personally delivered food donations to Marion Polk Food Share on their behalf for many years. She held a number of hobbies and interests that brought her joy. She loved reading non-fiction books and could also regularly be seen reading the New York Review of Books, New York Times, New Yorker, Oregonian, and Statesman Journal. She could often be seen doing the puzzles in the latter four publications and played Scrabble competitively with her grandchildren. At the age of 7, she began playing the piano, and she continued playing for the rest of her life. She also regularly attended performances by the Camerata Musica, Philharmonia Orchestra, Delgani String Quartet, and Oregon Symphony. Loraine would often say that she only ate for the sake of dessert, and her favorite dessert was by far cheesecake. She would also often say that cats were her favorite people, and any time she would come across a strange cat, she would be overjoyed and would always attempt to pet them. She is survived by her daughter Mary and her three grandchildren, Cheryl, Richard, and Michael Nevarez, whose upbringing she played a vital role in, as well as her son-in-law Jeffrey Kennedy and his two sons. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating blood to the Red Cross or contributing to the Camerata Musica Salem or Family Promise of the Mid-Willamette Valley. A Celebration of Life will be held at The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Salem on Saturday, February 25th @ 2:00pm.
To plant a beautiful memorial tree in memory of Loraine Stuart, please visit our Tree Store
A Memorial Tree was planted for Loraine
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Wilhelm's Portland Memorial Funeral Home - Mausoleum - Crematory