Avis passed away on March 11, 2018, in Medford, Oregon, at the age of 91. She was a great lady and will be missed immensely by family, friends, and anyone lucky enough to be touched by her life.
She was born in New York State. Growing up during the Great Depression, she learned frugality, how to reuse items, and how to survive being a “PK” (preacher’s kid). She also developed a love of music, the outdoors, reading, and helping others less fortunate than she was.
She was valedictorian of her class when she graduated from high school. She went on to graduate from Ohio Wesleyan with a bachelor’s in sociology. The next day, she married Bill Farber and put her social work dreams on hold as she started the incredible, long-term job of raising five children. While the family was still young, they moved from Minnesota to California for new opportunities and a milder winter. As her family gradually left the nest, she started volunteering and then working at Ashland Public Library in Oregon. Later, she earned her master’s degree in psychology with emphasis in counseling at Southern Oregon University. This led her to a career as a Senior Services caseworker in Lebanon, Baker, and Klamath Falls, Oregon, always wanting to help others.
Throughout her life, she enjoyed playing piano, vibraharp, and singing for her church, senior citizens, or with family and neighbors gathered around her, singing along. She loved being outdoors, from the Finger Lakes and Adirondack Mountains in New York State to the mountain lakes and rugged coast of Southern Oregon. She kept up on politics and humor and read everything in sight, from newspapers and magazines to historical and mystery novels. And she always made sure you used proper spelling and grammar.
She will be remembered for greeting people with an instant smile, an endlessly patient ear, an endearing chuckle and an interest in people’s lives that made them feel they were the center of her life.
Avis is survived by two brothers, Don and Bob; children, Karen, Linda, Bruce, Keith, and Lorelle; grandchildren, Jeremy, Zachary, Misty, Alex, Breanna, Amelia, and Kendra; great-grandchildren, Kegan, Jett, Jordan, Hunter, and Gunner; and great-great-grandson, KayJay. Avis was preceded in death by her parents, Fred and Eunice; and her sister, Carol.
A memorial and celebration of Avis’s life will be held on Saturday, May 19 at 2:00 at the Bellview Grange in Ashland, Oregon.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the SMART Program (https://www.getsmartoregon.org) where she volunteered, reading with children in schools, or the Center for Spiritual Living in Medford, Oregon (https://www.cslroguevalley.org) where she was a member.