Mary Gale of Gwynedd

Springfield Sun - - FEATURES -

Mary (Hle­banja) Gale, of Gwynedd, passed away peace­fully on May 18 at Wil­low­brooke Court in Fort Wash­ing­ton, PA. She was 97.

Mary is sur­vived by her son Charles H. Gale IV (Bar­bara) of Doylestown and her daugh­ter, Nancy B. Granese (Dea­con Claude Granese) of Worces­ter. Also sur­viv­ing are her grand­chil­dren David C. Granese (Mar­i­anna Ca­pos­tagno), Chris­tine M. Gale and An­gela M. Granese; a great grand­daugh­ter Ju­lia Mara Granese; and two nieces Bar­bara Rowan and Pa­tri­cia Za­jac. Mary was pre­de­ceased by her lov­ing hus­band of 50 years Charles H. Gale III, a grand­son Charles H. Gale V and her sis­ter Anna.

Born in Philadel­phia Septem­ber 9, 1919, she was the daugh­ter of An­ton Hle­banja of St­ed­nji, VRH, Slove­nia, and Emma Warshilek Hlebenja of Steiger­half, Aus­tria.

Mary at­tended Mast­baum Ju­nior High and Stet­son High School. Early on, she worked at Brom­ley’s Lace Fac­tory to help sup­port her wid­owed mother. Later, she was em­ployed by Straw­bridge’s, in al­ter­ations and dress fit­tings.

Mary and Charles H. Gale III mar­ried on Sept 28, 1946. In 1953, they bought 7 acres of land and to­gether moved Gale Nurs­eries to Gwynedd in 1955. Mary planted tree seedlings with Char­lie, which are now ma­jes­tic trees over­look­ing the Gale prop­erty, and many beau­ti­ful res­i­den­tial gar­dens through­out the Philadel­phia sub­urbs. Mary acted as the fi­nan­cial man­ager of the firm un­til re­tir­ing at age 70. Mary chose to work be­hind the scenes let­ting Char­lie take the “spot­light” in the many years of ex­hibit­ing in the Philadel­phia Flower Show. She was be­side Char­lie and son Chuck as they ac­cepted the many awards, hon­ors and ac­co­lades for their ex­hibits and gar­dens in the PHS Flower Shows and gar­dens across the Delaware Valley, in­clud­ing the Wilkin­son Sword award from Eng­land.

Mary and Char­lie’s trav­els took them to Eng­land, Scot­land, France, Africa, the Mediter­ranean, Mex­ico, Canada, the Panama Canal, and the Caribbean. Af­ter Char­lie passed in 1997, Mary trav­eled with the St. Jude Church Se­niors of Chal­font and her church, the Gwynedd Church of the Mes­siah. They vis­ited Rus­sia, France, and the Na­tional Parks, and cruised down the Mis­sis­sippi River. Mary vis­ited Dis­ney World with Nancy and her fam­ily in 1998.

Mary’s cre­ative touch be­gan at an early age of 10 when she learned to sew. She cre­ated her own grad­u­a­tion and wed­ding dresses as well as dresses, suits, and gowns for her per­sonal wardrobe and for Nancy and rel­a­tives. She also de­signed cur­tains and drapes. Mary de­signed and cre­ated one of a kind flo­ral ar­range­ments. While help­ing to sell Christ­mas trees in the early days of Gale Nurs­eries, she also made Christ­mas wreaths.

Mary vol­un­teered at the Gwynedd Church of Mes­siah dur­ing her 50 years as a mem­ber in choir, the Welsh Vil­lage Fair and Bel­fry Bar­gains. She also of­fered her tal­ents of sewing choir gowns and wher­ever nec­es­sary. Mary worked with the PTA for Spring House School and was an ac­tive mem­ber of the Ladies Lion Club of Lower Gwynedd.

Mary moved from the Gale home­stead to Gwynedd Es­tates ACTS Com­mu­nity in March 2003, where she met old neigh­bors and friends and made many new ac­quain­tances.

Her lov­ing and kind ways en­gaged many res­i­dences and em­ploy­ees of Wil­low­brooke Court. Her se­niors’ year­book rec­og­nized her “pret­ti­est smile.”

Fu­neral ser­vices are pri­vate. Do­na­tions may be made in Mary’s mem­ory to Fort Wash­ing­ton Es­tates Wil­low­brooke Court Ac­tiv­i­ties Fund, 735 Susque­hanna Road, Ft. Wash­ing­ton, PA 19034

To send con­do­lences to the fam­ily, please visit the fu­neral home web­site listed be­low.

Scan­lin Fu­neral Home, Chal­font, PA


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